AUSTIN EDITION Store clerks breathe sigh of relief

By Jim Troyer


The men and women behind the counters at convenience stores in Austin sighed with relief Tuesday as news spread of an arrest in an armed robbery. The clerks hope it solves a string of holdups that has kept them and police officers on edge this summer.

"I am very, very happy," said Ahmet Momed, cashier at the Sinclair station on Main Street, hit three times this summer by a lone gunman.

Again and again the robber was described by his victims as a white man of medium build who flashed a small black revolver at his victims. The robber seemed to become more brazen with each heist. At the Sinclair station Aug. 24, he told the clerk to lie on the floor while he reached across the counter, punched a key to open the register and scooped out bills.


Momed said employees tried to keep the store's security camera running and keep cash on hand to a minimum. "That's about all you can do," he said.

"It's a big relief," said Crissy Buster, manager of Budget Oil Co. "People are feeling a lot better."

Her counter on Oakland Avenue East was so busy at 2:45 p.m. Tuesday it would have been hard for a robber to approach her.

"It was not a big worry for me because I work the day shift," she said. She thought most about the danger, however, when she came to work in the morning.

Buster said she noticed increased police patrols around the station and praised the police effort. "I think they did a good job."

Kim Millam, manager at Apollo III on Oakland Avenue West, shared that sentiment. "They did a good job," she said.

Apollo III was hit twice. "We are always taking precautions," she said, "not leaving much in the drawer. It scares you a bit, but you get over it." Sunday's arrest came after a robbery at the Apollo store.

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