Police believe a masked gunman who robbed a Reading gas station late Thursday night is the same suspect in five Stoneham area armed robberies including Winchester and an attempted armed robbery Sunday night at a convenience store in Stoneham.
The Gulf Gas Station on Main Street in Reading was robbed of several hundred dollars Thursday evening at approximately 10:45 p.m., according to Reading Police. The suspect was described as a white male, approximately six feet tall and 180 pounds. He was wearing black pants, a black sweatshirt with a hood and a mask.
The suspect made it a point to show his black handgun to the clerk before he took several hundred dollars, according to police.
Police believe the suspect "matches the description of the suspect from recent armed robberies in Melrose, Stoneham, Woburn and Winchester."
At 9:21 p.m. on Veterans Day (Sunday, Nov. 11), Stoneham Police responded to a report of an attempted armed robbery at the C-Store, 41 Main St.
"(The) suspect brandished a handgun; however, did not get any cash," Dalis said. "Clerk did not mace the suspect but did throw a cup of 'chili powder' in his face."
The suspect fled the store in the direction of George Street, according to Dalis, and a Massachusetts State Police K-9 unit was called in. Dalis said it is unknown if a getaway vehicle was used during the attempted armed robbery Sunday but did add that it was "highly likely."
The description of the suspect in Sunday's attempted armed robbery appears to match the ones given by witnesses in five armed robberies—including one at the DB Mart convenience store and another at Sunset Tanning in Stoneham—in the area since Oct. 30, according to Dalis. The suspect also robbed businesses at gunpoint in Winchester, Woburn and Melrose, according to investigators.
There were nighttime armed robberies Nov. 2 at the DB Mart in Woburn, Nov. 5 at the Dairy Barn in Winchester and Nov. 7 at Richdale Convenience Store at 54 West Wyoming Ave. in Melrose, according to investigators. As with the other armed robberies in the region, an undisclosed amount of cash was stolen from the register in both cases, according to police.
Anyone with information related to the robberies is asked to contact Stoneham Detective Christopher Dalis at 781-438-1215 ext. 3133, Melrose Police Detective Bureau at 781-979-4473 or 781-979-4472, Melrose Police's anonymous tips line at 781-979-4470 or Detective Michael Saunders at 781-942-6767.