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Cash stolen from E.C. cleaners during third armed robbery in June

June 25, 2001|By DARREN SIMON, Staff Writer

For the third time this month, El Centro police are investigating an armed robbery, this time after a man brandishing a knife stole a small amount of cash from a local cleaners this morning.

The robbery occurred before 7:30 a.m. at Murray Cleaners in the 100 block of Fifth Street in downtown El Centro.

According to El Centro police Lt. Paul Longoria, the business' owner saw a man attempting to break into the cash register.

When the owner attempted to confront him, the man pulled out a knife and made it clear he wanted the owner to take the money out of the register.

With the suspect holding the knife, the owner took the money from the register and handed it to the bandit, who then fled on a bike on Fifth Street.

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The owner was not injured.

Longoria said the suspect was described as Hispanic, 25 to 30 years old, 5 feet 4 to 5 feet 5 inches tall. He had a thin build and was wearing a blue bandanna over his face.

The suspect was wearing jean shorts and a light-colored shirt.

Longoria said this morning's robbery does not appear to be connected to two robberies earlier this month.

The first occurred at 10 p.m. June 13 at the Texaco station at 1865 Adams Ave. when a man thought to be a Hispanic male wearing a mask and brandishing a handgun demanded money.

The clerk turned over an undisclosed amount of money to the man, and for some reason the robber fired one shot inside the business. No one was injured.

The second robbery occurred at 10:52 p.m. June 17 at Roberto's Taco Shop at 880 W. Adams Ave.

Again a man thought to be Hispanic and wearing a mask walked into the business brandishing a handgun and demanding money.

The suspect again fired one shot inside the business despite being given an undisclosed amount of money. No one was injured in that robbery.

The suspect in the second robbery was described as Hispanic, 5 feet 7 to 5 feet 10 inches tall and wearing a blue shirt, blue pants and a baseball cap, He was described as having a medium to heavy build.

El Centro police ask anyone with information about the robberies to call 337-4525.

Staff Writer Darren Simon can be reached at 337-4082.

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