Gunman makes away with cash from Amoco

by Robert Koch

An unidentified gunman stole $300 to $400 early Saturday morning from the Southeast Amoco service station at 1000 University Ave. S.E.
The gunman entered the station at 3:10 a.m., drew a handgun and demanded money from both the cash register and from two employee wallets. He fled before police arrived, according to the Minneapolis police report.
The suspect was described as a 5-foot-8 white male with curly, sandy-brown hair, wearing blue jeans and a flannel shirt.
Shop attendant Christopher Jenkins, who was on duty at the time, said the entire robbery lasted no longer than two minutes.
“It kind of set in afterward,” Jenkins said. “I’m just glad I didn’t get shot.”
Cashier Joshua Beckman, also in the cashier booth at the time, said he first thought it was a joke.
After turning over the cash, Jenkins and Beckman ducked behind the counter as the suspect fled on foot eastbound into the adjacent alley. No shots were fired.
Although the gunman was on foot, Minneapolis police Lt. Steve Kincaid has not ruled out the use of a vehicle.
“It is not uncommon for robbers to have a vehicle parked a short distance away,” Kincaid said. “Vehicles are easier to find than people.”
Although the station has surveillance cameras, it is not clear if the incident was recorded. The case is under investigation.
Southeast Amoco has been the scene of previous robberies. A 1987 shooting left manager Roger Reinhart dead. The station was also robbed in August and October of 1995. In all incidents, the suspects were caught.
In more recent years, the station has been an uneventful place with an occasional no-pay for gas, Kincaid said.
Station owner Jerry Showalter said: “It’s a good neighborhood.”

In other police news:
ù A patron of Grandma’s Saloon and Grill on the West Bank was charged with a felony after allegedly breaking a window valued at $696.09 early Friday morning.
Derrick Morehead became angry after being removed from the bar and later threw rocks at the window, according to a criminal complaint filed the same day.
University senior and Grandma’s assistant general manager Kim Guse, who was working at the time, said a security guard from the nearby Holiday Inn Metrodome witnessed the incident and held the man until police arrived.
Property crimes where damages exceed $500 constitute felonies, said Lt. Rick Giese of the University Police.
ù Vandals tore away two maroon University flags Wednesday night after toppling the 10-foot flagpoles to which they were attached. The flags stood behind the visitor information center on Pillsbury Drive Southeast opposite the University Armory.
Jeff Dorle, information center program assistant, said the flags were bolted to poles built to withstand hurricane-force winds.
The case is inactive pending further information.

Robert Koch covers police and courts and welcomes comments at [email protected].