A Washington man who demanded cash from a clerk at the Fas-Trip gas station/convenience store at Highway 100 and South Point Road Wednesday night is being charged with attempted stealing, a misdemeanor.
Detective Sgt. Brad Erisman said Washington police applied for an attempted robbery charge, a felony, against the suspect but the prosecuting attorney’s office decided to issue the misdemeanor charge after reviewing the case.
Police arrested the suspect, Quentin Stanley, 20, Thursday night. He was released Friday, Erisman said, on the misdemeanor summons.
According to a police report, Stanley entered the store shortly after 11 p.m. and got some nachos, a soda and cigarettes before going to the checkout. When the clerk opened the cash register, Stanley allegedly ordered him to “empty the drawer,” police said.
At that point, police said the clerk told the man that was “not going to happen,” and closed the drawer.
The suspect then remarked that he was “just joking” and walked out.
After he left, another customer approached the clerk and told him that she saw the suspect pushing buttons, trying to open the cash register, while the clerk was away from the counter.
Erisman said that is the basis for the attempted stealing charge. On a surveillance video, the man is seen pushing buttons on the register eight times, Erisman said.
The charge is a misdemeanor because there was not $500 in the register, the detective explained.
The man was last seen walking across the parking lot. Police said it was not known if he had a car waiting nearby.
Police were called about the incident at 11:07 p.m.
It was the second time a Washington Fas-Trip store was targeted by thieves in little more than a week.
Early last Thursday, Sept. 13, a man robbed a clerk at the Fas-Trip store at Fifth Street and Highway 47 after displaying a pistol in the waistband of his pants. He got away with a half-gallon of whiskey and a pack of cigarettes, but was caught by police minutes later.
John E. Huggins Jr., 24, is charged with one count each of first-degree robbery, armed criminal action, theft of a handgun and resisting arrest in last week’s holdup. He was being held on a $50,000 cash-only bond.
Police said while Huggins displayed a handgun and threatened the clerk, Stanley did not show a gun or make any threats.
Huggins, meanwhile, was arraigned in associate circuit court this week on charges of first-degree robbery, armed criminal action, theft of a handgun and resisting arrest in the Thursday, Sept. 13, holdup.
When police arrived at that robbery scene shortly after 1 a.m., a witness told them that the suspect was seen running toward the Mercy Hospital parking lot.
Patrolman Greg Walters then saw the fleeing suspect and ran after him.
The man sustained some scrapes and bruises when he fell over a concrete retaining wall on the Third Street side of the hospital, police said, then he continued running but soon tired and was taken into custody near the American Legion.
A small revolver was found a few feet from the suspect and police recovered the cigarettes and liquor taken from the store.
Huggins initially told police that another man forced him at gunpoint to rob the convenience store, but later during questioning he admitted to police that was not true.
Police said Huggins had been visiting a man who lived near the convenience store prior to the robbery and allegedly took the revolver from the home to use in the holdup.