Man likely responsible for several robberies in Portsmouth said ‘thank you’ for the cash, manager says


PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) – Portsmouth Police are investigating several robberies to businesses they say most likely involve the same suspect.

Detectives with the Portsmouth Police Department are continuing their investigation into the robbery of a local video game store and two 7-Eleven stores in less than 24 hours.

On Wednesday, Feb. 12, a man entered the Old Skool Games store on Portsmouth Blvd. and robbed it. The crime happened around 1:30 p.m. Detectives say the suspect implied he had a gun and demanded money from an employee, who complied.

Shortly before midnight that same day, officers were called to the 7-Eleven at 4001 Greenwood Drive for the report of an armed robbery. The suspect in this case also demanded money from an employee.

On Thursday, Feb. 13, another 7-Eleven in Portsmouth reported an armed robbery. This time it was around 3:25 a.m. at the business at 600 Frederick Boulevard.

There were no injuries reported in any of these crimes.

Leslie Bryant, the manager of Old Skool Games store, wasn’t in the store at the time of the robbery but her employee says the whole situation was bizarre. Bryant says the man was surprisingly nice. 

She was told he asked for games for his child and casually walked through the aisles and then stopped to speak with the employee. 

“He turned back around and said ‘Excuse me guys, I hate to have to do this and I don’t want to hurt anybody but I need all of the money in the register,'” Bryant said.  “He actually thanked her for handing [him] the money after he robbed her. The employee gave him $200.”

“It’s really unfortunate that they decided to hit a mom-and-pop store. We are here to make people’s experiences better with games,” Bryant said.

In each case, the suspect description was similar. He’s described as a black male in his 30s, taller than 6 feet, wearing a gray hat, gray sweatpants, white socks and black flip flops. The only difference in each case was the top the suspect was wearing; in one crime it was a green hoodie with the word “Miami” on the front, in the Frederick Blvd. case he wore a blue and black zippered hoodie and the suspect in the video game store robbery wore a red quarter zip pullover.

Detectives need your help identifying the suspect. They released surveillance photos from each of the crimes. If you recognize the suspect pictured, you are urged to contact the Crime Line at 1-888-LOCK-U-UP℠ (1-888-562-5887). You can also to submit an anonymous tip through the P3 Tips app.

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