EAU CLAIRE, Wis. - An armed gunman robs two Eau Claire gas stations within minutes of each other, and police need the public’s help to track down the suspect.
The Holiday Station on Eddy Lane was hit first. An armed robber wearing a mask came in demanding cash, the clerk handed it to him, and the man ran off.
It happened again about an hour later at the Holiday on Clairemont Ave and Fairfax Street, with the gunman getting away with more money.
Police say they believe two cases are related, but they're not sure they were done by the same suspect.
As the investigation continues, store owners are taking notice, and are thinking about safety.
“(The Eddy Lane neighborhood) was safe before but now I don't know. I don't think so,” Chia Xiong, the owner of Asian Cafe on Eddy Lane said.
She said she's been concerned for her safety, along with her restaurant, since she had a break in a few years ago.
“They didn't take much, since that, we got a security camera, so that we feel a little bit safer here now.”
But after a robbery across the street at the Holiday Station Wednesday night, she said her worries have grown.
“That scared me more.”
Eau Claire Police said they're looking for a man standing 5’10”, between 160 to 170 pounds, with any clothes that match what the robber was wearing that night.
The man at the Eddy Lane store wore a white mask, a red hooded sweatshirt, white gloves, and white shoes with a black semi-automatic handgun demanding money and took off on foot. The same situation happened at the mega holiday on Clairemont Avenue, except the robber had a black hooded sweatshirt with a red "Air Jordan" logo, light colored pants and gray or brown shoes.
“People who know people who have a similar sweatshirt, or have clothing that matches, I’d urge you to check out the photos ... and be proactive in helping us,” Eau Claire Police Community Relations Officer Kyle Roder said.
Police say it's a reminder to keep an eye out for crime and for store owners to have working security systems.
“We want people to take basic safety precautions, be very aware and alert and aware of their surroundings and just make sure they do the things they need to be safe in the community as well.”
Julie Parker, who owns Julie's Salon at Cutting Edge, across from the Mega Holiday in Fairfax Street says she's now considering an upgrade to her store's security.
“If they get away with it, or if they're not caught then, they're more apt to do it again. This is an easy target then, this is a 'I got away with this' or someone else might think they can do it,” Parker said.
Police say they're searching for any more evidence and were glad no one was hurt.
“As far as no physical injuries, that's something we are thankful for, and we're hoping the public will help us solve this case,” Roder said.
“The faster they catch him, the more safe people will feel,” Parker said.
Anyone with information on the crimes is asked to contact the Eau Claire Police at 715-839-4972.
(EAU CLAIRE POLICE DEPARTMENT NEWS RELEASE) --
On Wednesday, July 2, 2014, at 10:57 p.m., Eau Claire Police responded to an armed robbery at the Mega Holiday Store at 2205 Eddy Lane in the City of Eau Claire. Upon arrival, officers secured the scene and determined that the suspect had already fled the location with an undisclosed amount of cash. Additional officers searched the surrounding area for the suspect and evidence related to the crime.
As officers were processing the first crime scene, at 11:51 p.m., Eau Claire Police received a report of a second armed robbery at the Mega Holiday Store at 2308 E. Clairemont Avenue. Officers responded to that location and determined that the suspect had fled the store on foot with an undisclosed amount of cash, leaving to the north along the west side of Kmart.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Eau Claire Police Department at 715-839-4972.
EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) -- Police are searching for a suspect thought to be involved in the armed robberies of two Holiday gas stations in Eau Claire.
A report of a robbery at gun point came in just before 11 p.m Wednesday night at the Holiday gas station on Eddy Lane.
The clerk at the gas station described the suspect as wearing a red hooded shirt, a white mask, an Adidas backpack, and carrying a small handgun. The suspect ran away on foot.
A second report came in at 11:50 p.m. of another armed robbery taking place at the Mega Holiday gas station at 2308 E. Clairemont Avenue.
The suspect of the second robbery was also described by the gas station clerk as wearing a red hooded shirt, a white mask, an Adidas backpack, and carrying a small handgun. The suspect ran away on foot.
In both robberies the suspect left with an unknown amount of cash, and no one was injured.
Eau Claire police are searching for the suspect and are investigating surveillance footage.
If you have any information you are asked to call the Eau Claire Police Department.