EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

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July 11, 2014

Police: Man tried to shoot clerk, but gun malfunctioned

Ask public's help in identifying masked robber at Tedeschi store

HAVERHILL — Police are asking the public’s help in identifying a man who demanded money from a store clerk and then tried to shoot her.

Deputy Chief Donald Thompson said witnesses told police the gun appeared to malfunction when the man pulled the trigger during an attempted robbery yesterday morning.

“This incident was alarming because he pointed the gun and pulled the trigger,’’ Thompson said. “The suspect tried firing it and cocked it a second time. It appeared to the witnesses that the gun jammed.

“It’s important we get the public’s help in identifying this man,’’ he said. “If anyone saw something, someone running from the scene, any bit of information would help.’’

Police said the man walked into the Tedeschi Food Mart in Dudley Plaza at Main and Dudley streets about 6:25 a.m. yesterday. He walked toward the cash register area and pointed a black handgun at the clerk, police said.

He demanded money, but the female store clerk was unable to open the register, investigators said. They said he then threatened to kill her and tried to fire the gun at her, but it appeared the weapon jammed.

Witnesses told police that the man then ran from the store and was last seen heading up Dudley Street next to the plaza.

Police described the man as between 20 and 25 years old with black curly hair. They said he was wearing a white mask, blue hoodie and gray jeans.

Police said they sometimes deal with store robberies involving guns, but seldom is a gun fired and almost never at a person in the course of a robbery.

That, police said, is what makes this case stand out and shows this man to be particularly dangerous.

In the last year, Haverhill police have made several arrests after releasing suspects’ photos to The Eagle-Tribune and asking the public’s help identifying them.

How to help

Anyone with information is asked to call Haverhill detectives at 373-1212. Tips may also be left at that number or by using the MYPD app.

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