CINCINNATI – Police say they have arrested a 17-year-old gunman and two accomplices responsible for more than a dozen robberies in the city this month.
That’s a relief to Joyce Alexander, a clerk at the Shell station in Camp Washington. She says the teen put a gun in her face Wednesday night.
“Young man came to the door, pulled a gun, said ‘Give me everything you've got,’” Alexander recounted Friday.
“I said ‘OK.’ Took all the money out of both registers and he left.”
Alexander said she was scared staring down the barrel of a gun.
“I was shaking in my boots, but I stayed calm because you don't want to upset nobody,” she said.
Surveillance photos show a number of the robberies and police were able to develop enough information to charge the juvenile along with 20-year-old Kijuane Jones and 21-year-old Rodney Knox with multiple counts of aggravated robbery.
One of those robberies was the U.S. Bank job on Harrison Avenue on Tuesday, police said. If so, federal gun charges could produce a stiffer sentence if they are convicted.
“These guys are responsible for at least more than a dozen robberies over the past couple of weeks going back to the beginning of December, maybe even before that,” Cincinnati police Capt. Doug Weisman said Friday.
Weisman, who heads the Criminal Investigations Section, said the older suspects let the 17-year-old do the dirty work.
“We believe the juvenile was responsible for most of the actual face-to-face robberies, but they were all accomplices together, so they were charged equally,” Weisman said.
District Three Violent Crimes Squad officers stopped the three in a vehicle on Werk Road late Thursday night and arrested them without incident, police said.
They are suspects in robberies in Price Hill, Westwood, Camp Washington, College Hill and elsewhere, police said.
The Smile Drive Thru in Westwood was one of the places robbed Thursday night, police said. Employees there said the pattern was the same — young man pulled a gun, demanded money, got it and left.
“It's nice to get some resolution out of this,” said Steven Mansion. “Hopefully, these are the guys and we can get some justice of this."
Back at the Shell station, Alexander was torn thinking about her safety, but also about the robbers’ lives.
“I'm glad that they caught him, but I'm sad because they’re so young,” she said. “I'm going to pray for them and their families and maybe God can give them some kind of guidance.”
Police ask anyone with information about the trio and recent armed robberies to call Crime Stoppers at 513-352-3040 or submit a tip online at TIP411.com.