Weis Market in North Laurel robbed by 3 men

May 18, 1994|By Ed Heard | Ed Heard,Sun Staff Writer

Three men who robbed a North Laurel grocery store Monday night may be responsible for two similar holdups in Columbia and Laurel, police said.

Howard County police say at least 15 customers and employees were in the Weis Market in the 9200 block of All Saints Road when the men entered the store about 9 p.m. No one was injured.

The grocery store robbery -- which police say is rare in Howard County -- is similar to an armed robbery of a Kings Contrivance Valu Food store Jan. 31 in which three armed men ordered employees and customers to the floor before taking money from cash registers.

"The probabilities are strong that this group may be serial and experienced in several robberies," said Sgt. Pete D'Antuono, head of the Crimes Against Persons Unit.

Sergeant D'Antuono said the same group may be responsible for a recent supermarket robbery in Laurel.

In the holdup Monday, witnesses told police the suspects entered the Weis Market and pretended to shop. One of the men rolled a shopping cart as the two other men wandered around the store.

Minutes later, they put on ski masks, approached the front of the store together, and announced the robbery, police said.

Witnesses said two of the men were armed with handguns. Police say the robbers searched cash registers and one vaulted a counter to enter a store office before fleeing with an undisclosed amount of cash.

Officers led a K-9 dog team on a search of the area, but found nothing, said Sgt. Steven Keller, a county police spokesman.

Store managers refused to say whether security guards were present at the time of the robbery. Employees who were working at the time were given the day off yesterday.

"It was a tragic experience for most of them," said Ray Yaegar, an assistant grocery manager. "A few people are still down, but we're moving on."

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