East Meadow Armed Robbery ‘Likely’ Related to Crime Spree, Cops Say

Gas Station Robberies
An armed assailant, pictured in these surveillance images, is believed to be responsible for nine robberies and one homicide since December, police said.

An armed robbery in East Meadow early Wednesday morning is “likely” related to a string of similar crimes that have occurred in Nassau County over the last two months, including one case in which a clerk was murdered, Nassau County police said.

Dep. Insp. Kenneth Lack, the police department’s chief spokesman, said detectives are investigating the robbery at a Sunoco gas station on Hempstead Turnpike at 1:40 a.m. Wednesday, which he said is likely related to nine similar incidents since Dec. 20. The same suspect is believed to be responsible for the slaying of a 58-year-old gas station attendant in Jericho on Jan. 28.

In the latest incident, police said a male entered the gas station at 2475 Hempstead Turnpike and approached two employees, demanding cash while threatening the pair with a black handgun. The suspect fled on foot after obtaining an unknown amount of cash, police said. No customers were inside the gas station at the time of the robbery, police said.

A description of the suspect was not provided. But the suspect in the string of armed robberies has been described as a black man between 5-feet, 11-inches and 6-feet tall, with a thin build, wearing all black Nike clothing, a black mask, black gloves, black Nike sneakers with red laces and armed with either a black or a silver revolver.

“This subject has demonstrated that he is very violent, or can be very violent,” acting police commissioner Thomas Krumpter said during a press conference last week. The investigation, he added, “is one of the highest priorities of this department at this time.”

Two days prior to the press conference, the same suspect robbed a Shell gas station in Jericho on Feb. 8.

Police have yet to say if anything was taken during the homicide in Jericho.

Aside from cash, the assailant has also robbed several businesses for cigarettes. All but two of armed robberies believed to be linked occurred at gas stations. The suspect twice robbed a Hicksville 7-Eleven store in the span of five days.

The string of crimes has sparked a massive manhunt. Krumpter said last week that both the robbery and homicide squads, plus the Major Case Bureau and Bureau of Special Operations are investigating the incidents.