The Port Arthur News
A Groves convenience store was robbed twice in one week after remaining incident-free for more than 20 years.
At approximately 10 a.m. Wednesday, the owner of Food Spot No. 2, 5011 Monroe, returned to the store after getting money from Wells Fargo, located at the corner of Texas 73 and Twin City Highway, said City Marshal Jeff Wilmore.
Wilmore believes that the store owner was followed from the bank back to the store by two men driving a silver KIA SUV with the license plate number BCZ5558.
When he arrived back at the store, he was stopped by the men, both with guns, in the parking lot. An undetermined amount of money was taken, Wilmore said.
Just a week ago on Jan. 3, the owner’s brother, Yasin Adaya, was robbed by two men in masks soon after he opened the store at 5:30 a.m.
“They put a gun to my head and took almost $3,000,” Adaya said. “A year ago, this never would have happened — this is a nice area with a Walmart and other stores and now every month and a half, another store is getting robbed.”
Wilmore said that there were eight total armed robberies in 2012, which makes these robberies a major concern for the department. In the last decade, the average number has been 16.
“We are concerned that eventually they will get violent in order to get what they came for,” Wilmore said.
Armed robberies are not usually profitable, he said, with the robbers not taking more than $50 to $75.
“The robbers have figured out what they do,” Wilmore said and commented that the department believes there is a regional group committing robberies in the area from Houston to the Golden Triangle.
“This is really an investigative case to be solved more than something that can be fixed by increasing daily patrolling,” he said.
Wilmore commented on the store owners’ lack of security. “They have to change their practices. We try to teach people basic crime prevention for their house or businesses.”