CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - Chesterfield police are searching for a suspect that’s robbed several stores at knife point, they believe he targeted three stores in the county in three days.
Saturday night, police said a man entered the Lucky’s convenience store on Steeplestone Drive, displayed a knife and demanded money. The suspect fled the area with an undisclosed amount of cash. No one was injured.
Sunday, at approximately 7:20 p.m. investigators say a man entered the business, displayed a knife and demanded money from the register. He then fled the area with an unknown amount of cash.
Early Monday morning, police were called to 5549 Belmont Road at 1:15 a.m. after a man entered the store, displayed a knife and demanded money. The suspect was able to get away with an undisclosed amount of cash.
Chesterfield police believe the same suspect is responsible for all three robberies. He is described as a white male with a thin build, between 5-foot-7 and 6 feet tall and in his late teens or early 20s.
“If anybody knows him come forward, this is dangerous. I don’t know if this kid knows how dangerous this is. We want to feel safe in our neighborhood," said Heather VanderPas.
VanderPas works at Trolley Market on West Main Street, and says she is certain, the same suspect robbed the store of more than $500 on Jan. 5. VanderPas was with her friend behind the counter when she says the suspect came in through the back door, and held her friend at knife point.
“He picked her up and put the knife to the back of her neck,” she explained. “He pulled her off the stool and he told me to open the register, so I got scary calm, opened the register started handing him the money.”
VanderPas says she was able to calmly talk to the suspect until he eventually got mad and ran out of the store.
“I just don’t want this to happen to anyone else, but it keeps happening," said VanderPas. “He can have the money but he can’t have our city, he can’t have our community, he can’t have our sense of peace.”
VanderPas said she has continued to see reports and a suspect photo that she instantly recognized.
Monday was her second day back at work, but says day one was a challenge and she is still working through the shock and trauma of the situation. She encourages any of the store clerks who have been robbed to seek counseling.
“It’s hard, but I don’t want this guy to steal my sense of peace from me,” she said. “I just want this guy to get caught. We are going to get this guy one way or another. I hope it is not a tragic end, but one way or another he is going to get caught."
Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Solvers at (804) 748-0660.