SHELBYVILLE, Ind. – Police are searching for an armed robber who is reportedly targeting one specific business – Dollar General. Detectives believe the same man is connected to nearly 10 armed robberies, crossing county lines.
Shelbyville police released surveillance video from February 1. A man is seen holding a basket and roaming the aisles of the Dollar General store off of East State Road 44. Investigators say pretending to shop is just part of this robber’s plan.
“I think his plan is not to hurt anybody unless he has to and if he has to it’s in the eye of the beholder,” said Brian Roberts, detective with the Shelbyville Police Department.
Investigators say after the suspect spends some time in the store, he goes up to the counter and tells the clerk he forgot his wallet. Thirty minutes later, he returns.
“He goes back a second time and cases, does a quick assessment of what he sees. If the opportunity is there then I think he’s taking advantage of it,” said Detective Roberts.
The robber reportedly threatened the clerk with a weapon and took off with cash. Detectives quickly figured out the Shelbyville Dollar General isn’t the guy’s first crime.
“We are seeing that same mode of operation in each instance,” said Detective Roberts.
Investigators believe in each of the nearly 10 cases, the suspect is armed and he’s shopping then striking.
“We will find him, and he will be punished for these crimes. I hope that he doesn’t hurt someone in the process. The biggest concern I would have is someone would get seriously hurt or even killed over $300 or $400. I mean it’s just ridiculous, needless,” said Detective Roberts.
The latest crime happened Monday night at the Dollar General in Franklin. Again, the man reportedly walked around the store before pulling out a knife and robbing the place.
“I think inevitably either one of two things will happen: either he will be caught and arrested for these acts or he will get violent,” said Detective Roberts.
Police tell us in some of these cases the suspect is even wearing some of the same pieces of clothing. Investigators aren’t giving the exact locations of the thief’s dollar store spree, only saying they’re confident he’s crossed county lines and it’s time for him to be stopped.
“We really need the help of the general public with all those eyes and ears out there,” said Detective Roberts.
Police aren’t exactly sure why this thief is targeting specifically Dollar General stores. The suspect is described as a white man in his late 20s or early 30s, with short facial hair. Witnesses told detectives he had extremely decayed teeth and a large nose.
If you know anything that can help, call Shelbyville police at 317-392-8118.