SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Savannah Police (SPD) are asking for help to identify two suspects involved in an armed robbery of a Habersham Street business on Tuesday.
Police say the robbery happened at Yia Yia’s Kitchen, 3113 Habersham St., at around 4 p.m.
Two masked black males armed with guns entered the business and demanded money.
The suspects fled the store with an undisclosed amount of cash and personal property from the victims.
The two men were last seen driving a dark green Kia Soul that had previously been reported stolen.
One of the subjects is described as a slim built black male who was wearing black pants, black shoes, a yellow traffic vest, a medical mask and gloves.
The other subject was described as a slim-built black male who was wearing a gray hoodie, blue jeans, ball cap, a mask, and black and white Nike sneakers.
The owner of Yia Yia’s says he’s concerned about the number of armed robberies happening at businesses in the area. SPD confirms there have been at least four major reports of armed robberies in the past three months. Two have been in Ardsley Park.
“My employees were sitting here, minding their business… next thing you know, they noticed the door briefly open…next thing you know they were being confronted by two gunmen,” said Stathy Stathopolous, the owner.
Stathopolous says the gunmen took about $200 from the register and a wallet from one of his employees. Surveillance video shows the guman taking the wallet from an employee’s pocket. Stathopolous says he was shocked most of all by the fact that the robbery happened in the middle of the afternoon.
“It’s kind of shocking for 4 o’clock,” he said, adding he is worried his neighbors have let their guards down with the lack of reporting of armed robberies. Police say they have not.
“These robberies have been close together and it seems like when it gets reported, it’s a trend. It’s not necessarily a trend happening per se, this is just something that happens,” said Corporal Barry Lewis, a neighborhood resource officer with SPD’s Central Precinct.
Cpl. Lewis is advising business owners to stay alert, especially during the pandemic.
“This person might be wearing a mask as a protection from COVID, but their actions are going to tell you differently. Maybe they’re just wandering around the store, they’re spending too much time, they’re not picking up product,” he said.
He also advises business owners to tell their employees that no item or money is worth their lives.
“When you have a weapon pointed at you, you just don’t know how you’ll react, so I’m very proud of how they reacted,” said Stathopolous of his employees. “Thankfully, the robbers got what they wanted left.”
Anyone with information is asked to contact police.
Tipsters remain anonymous.
Tips can also be submitted through a CrimeStoppers online tip portal at https://www.p3tips.com/tipform.aspx?ID=757.
Tipsters may qualify for a reward up to $2,500, depending on the severity of the crime. More information on the process of submitting a tip and how rewards are processed can be viewed at http://www.savannahchathamcrimestoppers.org/About_Us.cfm