Police searching for man they say committed three armed robberies in under 24 hours

Published: Sunday, Feb. 3 2013 8:34 p.m. MST

MILLCREEK — Police are asking for the public's help in locating a man believed to have robbed three locations in Salt Lake County in less than 24 hours.

Around 7 p.m. Saturday, the man entered the Wal-Mart at 4697 S. 900 East, went to a check out stand in the garden center, demanded money and indicated he had a gun, Unified Police Lt. Justin Hoyal said. The cashier told the man that the register would not open unless a purchase was made.

Hoyal said the man handed over some candy that he tried to pay for with a credit card, but the card was rejected. When the clerk said a manager needed to respond, the suspect fled.

He was seen leaving the area in an older, dark-colored, sedan with four doors.

About one hour later, just after 8 p.m., a man "matching the exact same description" entered a Del Taco at 3090 South Highland Drive, Hoyal said. The man approached the counter and lifted his shirt, revealing a handgun, before demanding money.

The employee opened the register and the man reached over and took the cash from the register before fleeing on foot.

Around 2:30 p.m. Sunday, a man matching the same description and wearing the exact same clothing as the suspect in the two incidences from Saturday night, entered a Chevron gas station at 310 E. 3900 South and asked the clerk to make some change for him, Hoyal said. Once the register was open, the man lifted his shirt, revealing a handgun in his waistband, and reached over and grabbed the money from the register. He then fled on foot.

"This suspect is the same suspect that committed two other armed robberies in our jurisdiction," Hoyal said. "The suspect is considered armed and dangerous."

The man has been described by police as a dark-skinned male between 20 and 30 years old who is 6 feet tall and has a medium build. In all three incidences he was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt with a red zipper and white logo on the left side of the chest with black pants and black shoes with white soles.

"We would like to get him caught and off the street," Hoyal said. "Fortunately, nobody has been hurt in these robberies, but we want to get him caught before someone does get hurt. He is definitely armed."  

Hoyal said that it is common for people who commit multiple armed robberies to become increasingly violent. He said police are anxious to catch the suspect "before it gets worse."

Anyone with information about the man has been asked to call Unified Police at 801-743-7000.

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