Man arrested for robbing 2 convenience stores in Manatee County

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MANATEE COUNTY - Authorities have arrested a man for robbing 2 convenience stores within minutes of each other early Friday.

The first robbery happened around 12:45 am at the 7-11 224 Pearl Ave.

According to a report, 50-year-old Gary Robinson entered the business and walked to the rear of the store to select a drink from the cooler. He went to the cashier as if to purchase the drink, and when the cash register was opened he lunged over the counter for the open cash drawer. The clerk resisted and a brief struggle ensued, but Robinson was able to grab a small amount of cash ($5-10) out of the cash drawer before leaving the store with the cash and the drink. He fled the area in a beige SUV.

The second robbery happened around 1 am the Circle K Convenience store at 904 30th Avenue East. Robinson the store and selected a beer from the cooler. He went to the counter with the beer and money in hand. The clerk opened the drawer the suspect reached over the counter and grabbed an unknown amount of currency from the register. As he grabbed the money, the store clerk slammed his hand in the drawer, which caused him to flee leaving his beer behind.

Within 2 hours of the call, Robinson’s vehicle was spotted and stopped by multiple units.

Robinson confessed and was arrested at the scene without incident.