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5 local grocery stores targeted in string of 'high-risk' robberies

Posted at 11:22 PM, Nov 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-26 08:02:58-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- In the last few days, five grocery stores have been robbed in Metro Richmond.

From Wegman's and Whole Foods in the West End, to Trader Joe’s newest location at Stony Point, to two different Publix stores that were hit in western Chesterfield County just hours apart.

Crime Insider sources say Henrico, Richmond and Chesterfield detectives are now working together to see if there's a common thread among the string of robberies.

The latest grocery store robbery was at the Publix at Charter Colony Parkway Tuesday night.

Around 9:30 p.m., police say a woman walked in and demanded cash from a cashier. The suspect was given the money and was last seen running into the parking lot.

CI sources say several shoppers were inside during the incident, but no one was injured.

"All we can do is protect ourselves and put ourselves into the very best situation,” said crime expert Steve Neal. “She's not superman. I'm not superman. We have a terrific police force locally. They do a fantastic job. We will just continue to go out and do the things we need to do."

Some of the suspects were armed during the robberies, but others were not.

"It’s high risk and low reward,” said Neal. “You're only talking about a small amount of money. For that kind of a risk, walking in and sticking a gun on a cashier at a grocery store is not an everyday crime."

Some shoppers say they are aware and plan on doing their part of reporting anything suspicious.

“The only thing you can do is if you see them, call police and let them handle it, so they can stop it from happening to one of your family members tomorrow,” Chris Nailer said.

CI sources say they are closing in on potential suspects. They say one of the suspects was involved in a police chase from Richmond to Hanover County that ended at the I-295 and Creighton Road exit Wednesday night.