By Carlos Correa

MODESTO (CBS13) – Detectives with the Modesto Police Department are carefully looking over surveillance video taken from at least three liquor stores that were robbed at gunpoint by thieves in just the last two days.

Investigators believe at least three of the robberies were committed by the same two men.

Things are almost back to normal at the United Paleteria Y Neveria ice cream shop in Modesto, where, less than 24 hours ago, security cameras caught a man robbing the business.

“I was here working like normal when a man walked in demanding the cash register, and the next thing you know, he leaned over the counter grabbed it and took off running,” said Lupe Mercado, owner of the shop.

Mercado says the man who robbed the store was the same person she saw a few days ago just standing outside her business with a second man.

“I was scared,” she said

Modesto police officers say they are investigating robberies at six other stores, including the CVS on McHenry Avenue where suspects walked away with pharmaceuticals.

“One thing I have noticed is robberies and other crimes in this area are happening too often,” she said.

CVS was hit around 5:30 Sunday night, about the same time the ice cream shop was hit on Monday.  The suspects also robbed two of the Bottle n’ Cork liquor stores and the Village Wine and Spirits store one after another on early Sunday night.

“It makes sense that it is in the evening, you have higher congestion, darkness obvious this time of the year, everybody is busy, you’re getting close to shift change for the police, people just have to be aware and look out for everybody else. We’re not in this alone,” said Chris Rose, who lives in Modesto.

Investigators say the liquor stores were armed robberies.  There is surveillance video from at least two of those stores, but the video has not been released.

“I definitely tend to keep my eyes open wherever I go anyway, just because it’s Modesto. It is relatively safe but it’s just like any other city, there is that element,” said Rose.

Modesto police officers say this is an on-going investigation.  There are still no arrests, but if you have information you are being asked to call Modesto police.


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