Five stores on Oahu were robbed Saturday night, all within a span of three hours.
We checked the Honolulu Police Department arrest logs Sunday morning and saw that the first robbery happened around 6:30 p.m. in the Waimalu area. About a half-hour later, a Waipahu store was robbed, and not long after that, just before 8 p.m., robbers targeted a smoke shop in Pearl City.
Then around 8:30 p.m., a store in Aiea was hit, and then around 9 p.m., a business in Ewa Beach was robbed.
Police say in all five cases, the suspects used what was described as a “dangerous instrument,” though it’s not clear if the same people are behind the crimes.
We visited one of the businesses that was hit last night, Hawaiian Holy Smokes, and the owner says he’s thankful his surveillance cameras were rolling.
Only two employees were working at the time of the robbery and, fortunately, no one got hurt.
Surveillance footage shows that a man wearing a hat, sunglasses, and gloves, and carrying a duffel bag came into the store around 7:30 p.m. Saturday. Employees said the man was shopping for about 15 minutes, then tells them that he forgot his wallet and walks out. Moments later, the man comes back, but this time with a gun in his hand.
“They came right for the cash register and took all the cash,” said Hawaiian Holy Smokes owner Jeremy Nickle.
The surveillance video also showed two other men wearing masks come into the store. Merchandise like electronic cigarettes were taken as well.
Nickle told with KHON2 the suspects took a total of $700 cash, another $700 worth of products and both employees’ wallets and watches.
Based on the footage, before the suspects fled the scene, the armed suspect appeared to knock a few items to the ground and then slammed a glass display case.
Nickle says that’s when the magazine from the gun fell out, leaving possible evidence behind.
“I saw the surveillance footage and thought, ‘oh my gosh,’ I can’t believe this is my shop this is crazy this isn’t Hawaii,” he reacted.
Nickle owns three stores and has been doing business in Hawaii for 14 years.
He told KHON2 this is the second armed robbery he’s been through, which is why he invested in up-to-date surveillance cameras.
“We’re doing the best we can we just can’t prepare for three people coming in with a gun you know, it can happen anywhere anytime,” he added.
At this time, police have made no arrests in this particular case.
If you have any information about the suspects, you are urged to call police.