Police are investigating three armed robberies in the space of five hours on Tuesday morning.
Two 24-hour gas stations were held up at gunpoint. In both cases, the masked robbers threatened staff with weapons before taking cash and escaping in a stolen vehicle, a red Honda Civic.
They struck first at Brown’s Esso in Industrial Park at 4 a.m., and then hit Brown’s Esso on Shamrock Road in Red Bay at 4:40 a.m.
In a separate incident, Mr. Arthur’s store on the George Town waterfront was held up at gunpoint just before 9 a.m. Tuesday. This time, the gunman threatened staff before escaping with the cash register under his arm.
A different vehicle, a tan-colored car believed to be a Honda, was used in the robbery on the convenience store.
Police believe the first two gas station robberies are linked, though they are not yet drawing any links between those robberies and the hold-up at Mr. Arthur’s.
According to a police statement, in both gas station robberies, two men entered the premises with their faces covered and brandished weapons before escaping with cash. A third man was seen in the vehicle during the second robbery.
At Mr. Arthur’s store on North Church Street, 80-year-old proprietor Arthurlyn Scott said she was getting used to such hold-ups after numerous burglaries and robberies at the store over the years.
She said, “He pointed the gun at me and said, ‘gimme what you got,’ then he grabbed the cash register and ran off.”
Ms. Scott was threatened with a machete in a previous robbery and was inside Cayman National Bank when it was robbed by a gang of armed men in 2012.
She said, “It never fazed me. When you get to 80, you don’t let these things bother you.”
She said the man had initially tried to buy a fruit punch with his credit card. The cashier told him he needed to spend more than $5 to use his card. He left the store, she said, and returned with the weapon, pointing it at the two women in the store before fleeing. Police have released a partial registration plate number “583” for the getaway vehicle.
No shots were fired and no one was injured in any of the raids.
The vehicle used in the two gas station robberies, a red Honda Civic, was stolen overnight from a home on Denham Thompson Way in George Town.
Derya Ilyn Kirkconnell Bengston, the owner, said she was shocked to find out her car had been used in a robbery. She said she found out the car had been stolen when police investigating the raids knocked on her door early Tuesday.
“I feel so bad because I work hard to get my things. I’m a single mother, I have to go work everyday and drop my son to school. Now everything is complicated to me,” she said.
Police are asking anyone who saw the vehicle, registration, 147 523, overnight to call them immediately on 949-4222.