EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

January 29, 2013

Police say robberies may be connected

By Mike LaBella

---- — HAVERHILL — Police believe the same man might be involved in at least two of three attempted robberies late last week, including one in which the suspect tried to hijack a car a woman was sitting in while waiting for her boyfriend outside a convenience store.

In two of the incidents, the suspect made a motion as if he were armed with a handgun, police said.

The first incident was reported Thursday at 11:45 p.m. Police responded to the Tedeschi Food Shops at 7 Dudley St. on a report of an attempted carjacking and robbery. A woman in her mid-20s told police she was sitting in her boyfriend’s car, which he had left running while he was inside the store. The woman said a man dressed in a grey-hooded sweatshirt and black scarf wrapped around his face opened the driver’s side door and got into the vehicle, police said.

Police said the woman jumped out of the car and ran towards the store to alert her boyfriend, who came running out of the store then ran towards the car and opened the driver’s door.

“The suspect then got out and told the boyfriend that he was going to rob him,” Police Deputy Chief Donald Thompson said. “The suspect put his hand under his sweatshirt and said he was going to rob him, then ran away into the neighborhood.”

The suspect was described as a man in his mid-30s, approximately 6-feet tall and unshaven with grey facial hair.

On Friday at 3:50 p.m., police responded to 165 Rosemont St. for a report of an attempted robbery.

A man told police he walking along Rosemont Street in the vicinity of Gare Ceramics when a man wearing a dark-colored ski mask and dark-colored jacket came running up behind him, grabbed him and demanded his wallet. Thompson said the victim was able to push the suspect away. The victim ran off and the suspect chased him a short distance, before the victim ran into Gare Ceramics and asked someone to call police.

At 11:53 p.m. Friday, police were again called to the Tedeschi store in Dudley Plaza on a report of an attempted robbery.

A clerk who was working behind the counter told police a man entered the store and tried to rob her of $80. She told police the suspect stepped behind the counter and placed something hard against her back, police said.

“When the clerk didn’t immediately produce the money, the man walked out the door,” Thompson said.

The woman described the suspect as 6-feet tall and that he wore brown khaki pants, a black hoodie and a black jacket, had grey facial hair and wore eyeglasses.

In both incidents at the Tedeschi store, the suspect made a motion as if were armed with a handgun, Thompson said.

Police believe the two incidents at the Tedeschi store are connected.

“Detectives are working with the store to review surveillance video,” Thompson said.

In all three instances, police were unable to locate any suspects during searches of the areas.

Anyone with information about these incidents is asked to contact olice Det. Megan Buckley at 978-373-1212, ext. 1561. You can also leave a message on the police anonymous tip line by dialing 978-373-1212 and following the prompts.