Clerks pistol-whipped during robbery

Monday, July 16, 2007 | 12:26 a.m. CDT; updated 1:40 a.m. CDT, Sunday, July 20, 2008

A man robbed a north Columbia convenience store and pistol-whipped the two clerks working there late Sunday morning, police said.

The man entered the I-70 Eagle Stop Service store, 1704 N. Providence Road, about 11:10 a.m. Sunday, Columbia police Sgt. Roger Allen said.

“We have footage of him from surveillance camera, and we may release it soon,” Allen said.

Allen said the man is about 5 feet, 9 inches tall with a goatee and may have a tattoo on his neck. He was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt, a white T-shirt, jeans and black shoes, Allen said.

At the time of the robbery, a 27-year-old man and a 22-year-old woman were working at the convenience store.

After entering the store and going behind the counter, the man demanded money and began removing cash from the cash register, Allen said. The man working at the store confronted the robber, who hit the clerk in the head with a handgun. As he took money from the cash register, he hit the clerk several more times with the handgun, demanding more money, Allen said.

The robber also hit the woman working at the store in the head with the gun and told her to move away from the counter. The man took an undisclosed amount of money and one of the clerk’s cell phones and ran away from the store, Allen said.

“The clerks were pretty shaken up,” Allen said. “He hit (the man working at the store) the first time and it wasn’t that bad, but he hit him again and (the clerk) kind of got the hint.”

Both clerks were taken to Columbia Regional Hospital and were released after receiving treatment for their injuries.

Allen said that police recovered some of the robber’s belongings but declined to describe what police found.

Anyone with information may call CrimeStoppers, 875-8477.

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