Worthington News

Hardware store robbery

Police say they fear trend of quick hits to support drug habit

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A man who tried to steal tools from Schreiner Ace Hardware escaped after an employee chased him for several blocks Aug. 19.

The attempted robbery occurred about 7:30 p.m., making it the third daylight robbery of a High Street retail business in the past six weeks.

According to police, the man walked into the hardware store and was placing tools in a red backpack when a store clerk confronted him. The thief pushed the clerk and ran.

The clerk followed on foot, chasing the man through the Old Worthington Library and out the door and into Hartford Park.

The last time he was seen, he was headed into the treeline on the south side of Hartford Park. Police and helicopters could not find him, leading police to think he might live in the area.

He was described as a white male in his 30s, with missing teeth and walking with a limp.

He wore a teal shirt, but he dropped it in the library during the chase.

The attempted robbery is not believed to be related to the two earlier robberies, but it might represent a trend toward robberies that net quick drug money, according to Worthington police Lt. Jerry Strait.

On July 9, a woman robbed the Worthington Dairy Queen, 926 High St. Courtney Collmar, 27, of Columbus, also allegedly robbed other restaurants in the north Columbus area. On Aug. 27, she was arrested during an attempted robbery at General Tso's Chinese restaurant, 5227 Godown Road.

On July 19, a man claiming to have a gun robbed Breugger's Bagels, 530 High St. That robbery has not been solved.

Strait said he fears these kinds of robberies could continue as long a people need to supply their drug habits.

"As long as drugs are available, we will continue to see strong-armed robberies," he said.

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