Police ask citizens to help bust armed robbers in three cases

Any of these robberies – in Gateway, Powellhurst-Gilbert, and Lents neighborhoods – could have turned deadly. Here’s what we’ve learned about these cases …

Police are on the lookout for thieves who, they say, endangered those they robbed with deadly weapons, during the commission of their crimes.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
The Portland Police Bureau, in cooperation with Crime Stoppers of Oregon, is asking for the public’s help in solving three armed robberies that took place in outer East Portland over the last few weeks.


Robbery #1: The case of the Kohl’s “Stealing Stabber”

The suspected shoplifter from this Kohl’s store in Gateway warned security guards he wouldn’t be taken without a knife fight.

A little before 8:00 p.m. on October 27, Kohl’s Department Store Loss Prevention staff tracked a shoplifter through their Gateway Shopping Center store, at NE 102nd Avenue and NE Halsey street.

“Kohl’s Loss Prevention Officers told Portland Police Bureau (PPB) East Precinct district officers that when the suspect was confronted about shoplifting, he threatened the security personnel with a knife,” said PPB Public Information Officer Sgt. Peter Simpson.

Police say this man was shopping for goods he didn’t intend to pay for at the Gateway Kohl’s store. Company-provided security image

While he’s checking out the merchandise, store security personnel are snapping photos of this accused shoplifter, who reportedly brandished a knife when he was confronted. Company-provided security image

“Then, the suspect then ran out of the area,” Simpson added. “The suspect is described as an African American male in his early 20s, 5’6″ tall, 160 pounds, wearing a dark sweatshirt with a red Air Jordan emblem on the front, and a baseball cap on backwards.”

Turn in this suspected knife-wielding thief – and pick up some extra cash for the holidays. Company-provided security image

Thanks to these amazingly clear security camera photos, someone will certainly be able to identify the suspect. If they turn in the knifeman before he hurts someone while committing a robbery – the informer may pick up a $1,000 cash “Christmas bonus” from Crime Stoppers.

See the end of this article for information about how to claim the reward; it’s Case #12-46.


Robbery #2: The case of the Dotty’s Takeover Holdup Caper

Dotty’s Deli’s are popular places to socialize and game. But, armed thugs marked this establishment for criminal take-out. Company-provided security image

On November 1, 7:50 p.m., Portland Police officers assigned to East Precinct responded to the report of an armed robbery at a Dotty’s Deli at 11926 SE Division Street in the Powellhurst-Gilbert Neighborhood.
“The victim told officers that two suspects entered the deli, both armed with handguns,” Simpson reported. “One suspect pointed a handgun at the clerk and the other waved it around the deli, and demanded people get on the ground.”

Two masked, armed thugs rush into this outer East Portland gaming deli at the start of their “takeover” style robbery. Company-provided security image

The masked gunmen rush behind the counter, chasing the employee into the rear part of the store. Company-provided security image

After obtaining an undisclosed sum of money, both suspects fled the area on foot, Simpson said. “Officers, including a Police K-9 Unit, conducted an extensive neighborhood search for the suspects, but did not locate anyone matching their descriptions.”

The suspects are described as two males, unknown race. One is described as 6’3″, medium build, wearing a navy-blue-colored hoody, blue jeans, black shoes with white laces, black gloves, and wearing a maroon-colored bandana over his face.

While one cleans out the till, the accomplice trains a gun on a patron heading out the door. Company-provided security image

The second bandit is described as 5’9″, thin build, wearing a gray hoody, dark-colored jeans, grey gloves, white tennis shoes with black soles, and wearing a white mask over his face.

See the end of this article for information about how to claim the reward; it’s Case #12-44.


Robbery #3: The Century Theater Thanksgiving Stickup

It wasn’t pre-Thanksgiving entertainment that a man was seeking, when he went into this popular theater.

This nervy broad-daylight stickup took place at Eastport Plaza – inside the Century 16 Theater in the Lents Neighborhood.

On the day before Thanksgiving, November 21, a man with a backpack strode into the theater lobby – but he wasn’t buying tickets.

As the suspected gunman walks up to the counter, he makes it clear he’s not there for a bucket of buttered popcorn. Take a good look at his face as he looks up! Company-provided security image

At 12:30 p.m., East Precinct officers were called on the report of an armed robbery at the theater.
The cashier told officers the bandit walked up to the counter and demanded money. “The suspect displayed a handgun tucked into his waistband,” Simpson said. “The suspect obtained an undisclosed amount of money.”

Flashing a gun tucked into his waistband, this man demands cash from the clerk. Company-provided security image

The stickup man fled on foot. Officers, including a Police K-9 unit, searched the area, including the parking lots – and to the immediate east, all around the closed-down Marshall High School campus – before fanning out into the neighborhood.

“Officers were not able to locate the suspect,” reported Simpson

This suspect is:

  • A white male in his late 40s or early 50s
  • 5’10” to 6′ tall, medium build,
  • short gray hair, unshaven, wearing a gray hoodie, blue jeans, black and white sneakers,
  • Carrying a black backpack, and a dark knit beanie cap.


For reasons unknown, the suspected robber has the clerk personally stash the cash in his grimy backpack. Company-provided security image

If you have any information about this one, remember to say it’s relating to Case #12-47.

How to turn information into cash
Crime Stoppers is offering a cash reward of up to $1,000 for information, reported to Crime Stoppers, that leads to an arrest in any of these cases, or any other unsolved felony, and you can remain anonymous in giving your tip.

Leave a Crime Stoppers tip online at their website: CLICK HERE to open it. Or, text CRIMES (274637) and in the subject line put 823HELP, followed by your tip, or, call 503-823-HELP (4357) and leave your tip information.

© 2012 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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