Hooded Vt. hood rattles ‘hoods

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MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) – An armed robber quickly becoming notorious for wearing a hooded sweat shirt backward and peering through two eye holes cut in the hood has robbed a fourth convenience store in eight days, police said.

The latest robbery came Monday night when the assailant robbed the Chittenden Mills Convenience Store on Route 15 in Jericho at about 9 p.m., the state police said in a news release.

“We believe he’s done three in the last week in Chittenden County, State Police Lt. Brian Miller, the detective commander for the Williston and Middlesex barracks, said Monday before the latest robbery.

The same suspect is also believed to have robbed the Hinesburg General Store on Jan. 22, The Lucky Spot in Richmond last Wednesday and a Champlain Farms in Colchester on Sunday morning.

In addition to wearing the reversed gray hood, which makes the face invisible, the assailant wears gloves.

A photograph taken by a surveillance camera at the Hinesburg General Store showed the assailant holding a black handgun in his right hand while he leaned over the counter.

The suspect is being described as about 5 feet 6 inches tall and weighing about 145 pounds.

Armed robberies are not new in Vermont, but the nature of the crimes is changing, Miller said.

“We’ve pretty much had them right along over the last 10 years,” Miller said. “It used to be they would use knives. Now it’s guns. That’s kind of a new trend.”

Law enforcement officials believe the robbers are looking for money to buy illegal drugs.

There have been 16 armed robberies across the state so far this year.

Ten have been solved, Miller said.

To date, no one has been hurt in any of the armed robberies.

The local police departments are working with the state police to find the suspect in the latest spree.

“The offender has struck in three separate jurisdictions. You generally have a sharing of resources when there is a common situation like this,” Hinesburg Deputy Police Chief Fred Silbur said before the most recent robbery.

Miller said the hooded robber has been committing the robberies at odd times, when it’s unlikely people will be in the store.

Anyone with information about the robberies is asked to call the state police in Williston at 802 878-7111.

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