Friday, November 16, 2007

Police arrest 'hoodie bandit' suspec staff

SEATTLE – Police say they've arrested the "hoodie bandit," a man suspected of robbing nine businesses in King and Snohomish counties within two weeks.

The suspect, 19 years old, lives with his mother in the Woodinville area. He was booked into King County Jail at 8:45 p.m. Thursday on one count of robbery, which occured Wednesday at a Baskin Robbins in Kingsgate. Other counts of robbery are expected at the time charges are filed. He is due in court Friday afternoon.

Since November 5, police say the suspect, who always wears a hooded sweatshirt, has robbed the Baskin Robbins, two Subway shops, two Shell stations, a 76 station, an AM PM, a wine and cigar store and a shop called Save-On Bev.

"He does have a criminal record, he's not unknown to the sheriff's office and local police, but boy, the number of robberies he did was really escalating," said John Urquhart, of the King County Sheriff's Department.

The suspect always used a semi-automatic handgun and he wasn't afraid to jump over the counter and confront the clerk. Police say he carried a backpack for the money he stole.

He covered his face with a ski mask or bandana. Most robberies took place between 8:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m., but the Baskin Robbins robbery happened mid-day.

His gun had police worried.

"We're afraid this is going to escalate and either a clerk or a customer that is going to walk in on this robbery is going to get shot," Urquhart said earlier this week.

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