Police catch pair of espresso bandits
August 28, 2008 · Updated 10:51 AM
MARYSVILLE Local baristas are relieved that police have captured a pair espresso bandits that hit a couple of Lakewood espresso stands repeatedly over the last two weeks.
A man fitting a similar description hit the Cabooso Espresso stand on 172nd Street four times, and the Espresso Z to B stand was hit once. Each time a man approached on foot, demanded money by implying or showing a weapon and then fled on foot.
A Stanwood man was picked up by police after a sketch of the suspect was broadcast on local media. Several people called police and the espresso stands to rely information and prosecutors think the mans wife helped by driving a get away car.
Cabooso Espresso owner Cheryl Bailey said one of her customers knew the man, and said that he had stolen a gun from them and was using methamphetamine.
Thats all he doing is getting enough for his next fix, Bailey said. Its just getting to be a little too much right now.
Molly Ryan worked at Espresso Z to B, which was hit around noon on Aug. 29. Ryan quit on Monday, saying the robbery spurred her to start carrying a gun and to look for a real job after nine months at the stand. Ryan majored in criminal justice and said many of her fellow baristas have started carrying as well.
Im very glad that hes in jail, Ryan said. That guy was lucky I was not here.
She said the police sketch artist did a good job and that helped bring the community together with tips for police to do their job.
Its grown too much out here, theres too many crazy people in this area, Ryan said.
At Cabooso Espresso, Bailey said she has lost at least $1,000 including cash from the till and lost business for each time the stand was roped off and closed for police investigations. One of her employees quit after a robbery and the rest were scared, and many were making plans to have their boyfriends watch the stand during their shifts. Bailey had just gotten off the phone with the father of an employee who didnt want his daughter working the next day. Bailey said that one of the robberies was committed by another person, possibly a former employee.
This is hurting me. I can only put myself in so many places, Bailey said.
Brandi Lynn is an 18-year-old who has worked at the Lakewood stand for a month, and she was robbed on Sept. 4, the third time the stand was hit. After that many robberies Lynn didnt think her business would get another visit, but she said she had a gut feeling when she opened the window that the man was up to no-good. It only took a minute for him to demand the cash and flee, and the shock didnt set in until after she dialed 911. According to Lynn the man said he didnt want to hurt her but that he had a gun.
It didnt really hit me until afterwards, Lynn said.
For all that, Lynn said she will stick with it, because its good money. The bandit didnt get her tip jar during the robbery, she added.
I would have taken it to the next level if he went that far, Lynn said.
For Marysville Police Chief Rick Smith, those comments arent helpful and he urged people not to arm themselves or to resist robbers when threatened. The last time Bailey was hit the bandit only got $30, and no ones life is that cheap, Smith said.
It is about getting out with their life in that situation, Smith said.
People have to understand that police are doing the best they can to capture criminals. Comply with the crook and go home alive is the best people can do, he added.
We dont advocate people carrying weapons to work.
He encouraged retail workers to continue to be vigilant, and to be concerned about copy cats.
Beware of your surroundings, know your customers, Smith said.
The department is still following up on a sibling shooting at a Marysville house, where a 16-year-old boy was shot in the neck by his 17-year-old brother. The shooting may have been accidental but officers are still working the case. Smith didnt address comments that the house was familiar to the police, but he was distressed by the type of handgun found at the home after the Sept. 5 shooting.
The 17-year-old fired a MAC 10, a large semi-automatic handgun that can be configured to full auto with a large clip.
Anytime you have a gun of this type, were concerned, Smith said, noting his officers are still investigating the circumstances of the shooting.
We followed up on that, were looking at it.