MANILA, Philippines – Video footage from a closed-circuit television camera may lead police to members of a robbery gang believed to be preying on 24-hour convenience stores.
The video showed four men helping themselves to items on the shelves and getting money from the cash register at a 7-11 convenience store in Malate, Manila last Sunday afternoon.
The robbers shot dead an American executive of an English language-training center.
Robert Edward Armstrong, 45, manager of General Testing in English Language Proficiency at Legazpi Towers in Malate, was inside the 7-11 store at the corner of Pablo Ocampo and F. B. Harrison streets when four robbers ordered the employees and several customers into the storage room while they emptied the cash register.
Senior Police Officer 1 Alonzo Layugan, Manila Police District (MPD) investigator, said Armstrong was shot when he tried to dash out of the store.
The investigator said that the wounded American managed to get into his car but one of the robbers shot him again.
Armstrong suffered five gunshot wounds and was declared dead on arrival at the San Juan de Dios Hospital.
Police said the robbers belonged to a gang that had allegedly robbed two other 7-11 stores in Manila last month.
Layugan said that three of the suspects entered the store and pretended to be customers while another stayed outside and acted as the lookout.
A still unidentified suspect wearing a blue T-shirt initiated the robbery that was recorded by the closed-circuit television (CCTV) installed inside the 7-11 store, which was only about 400 meters from MPD Station 9.
Police said the robbers forced the employees and customers to go to the back room of the store but Armstrong, who was buying bottled water, ran to the front door.
One of the suspects followed and shot him at the buttocks. Although wounded, the victim managed to board his car that was parked in front of the store, but the lookout followed him and shot him several times.
The suspects took P30,000 cash from the register and also took several items and packs of cigarettes before they fled on board two motorcycles towards Buendia Ave.
Layugan said they are also checking the CCTV of the two 7/11 branches to determine whether the same group was behind the successive heists. – With AP