Identity of robbery suspect sought

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By The Staff

A man robbed the Swami Mart on South Main Street in Heath Springs Sunday morning, and the Lancaster County Sheriff’s Office is trying to identify a suspect from surveillance video.
Sheriff’s spokesman Doug Barfield said in a release Tuesday that the suspect walked into the store about 8:30 a.m., saw other customers there and patted his pockets as if he had forgotten his wallet.
The clerk said the man walked outside and sat in his car for a few minutes until the other customers left, then came back in, tossed a gray plastic shopping bag onto the counter and told the clerk to put the money in the bag.
When she complied, the robber ran out and drove away in a green, older-model four-door sedan, possibly a Buick Regal, with an N.C. tag, Barfield said.
The suspect never showed a weapon, the clerk said, but had his right hand wrapped in a piece of clothing as if he had a pistol in his hand.
The suspect was wearing a black hoodie with “XXIX” printed down at least one sleeve. He was wearing long, dark athletic pants with red stripes down the outside of the legs, red sneakers, and a red, white and blue ball cap with “USA” printed on it.
The car has damage to the front passenger door and missing chrome trim. The vehicle was last seen driving north on Main Street through Heath Springs.
Barfield said in the release that the suspect was seen at the Dollar General Store in Heath Springs before the Swami Mart robbery. Investigators were also able to place the suspect at both the Pleasant Hill Mini Mart and Small’s Food center after the Swami Mart robbery. All of the events happened within a few minutes of each other.
“I encourage anyone who saw this man or this car or who has any information about his identity or this robbery Sunday morning to call us,” Lancaster County Sheriff Barry Faile said. “It appears the Swami Mart was just one of several potential targets of robbery, and the suspect needs to be identified and arrested.”   
Anyone with information about this or any other case should call the Lancaster County Sheriff’s Office at (803) 283-3388 or Midlands Crime Stoppers at 888-CRIME-SC (888-274-6372) or email www.midlandscrimestoppers.com.