DURHAM — Police in two Triangle cities are comparing notes to try to determine whether an Afro-wig-wearing man who robbed a Durham Subway restaurant last week is the same bewigged man responsible for three robberies at North Raleigh restaurants over the past two months.
In all four robberies, the suspect was seen wearing a black, puffy, oversized Afro wig while holding up the establishments at gunpoint.
No serious injuries have been reported, but the suspect struck one Raleigh restaurant employee with a gun, police said.
The latest robbery occurred May 1 at the Subway at 4830 N.C. 55 in south Durham, said police spokeswoman Kammie Michael.
Witnesses told police that a man armed with a gun strode into the restaurant shortly after 9:30 p.m. The robber climbed over the store counter and ordered employees to relinquish their cellphones before taking cash from a register and tip jar.
He was last seen walking slowly away from the restaurant, Michael said.
The restaurant employees described the suspect as a black man who stands between 6 feet and 6 feet 2 inches tall with some facial hair. In addition to the wig, he was wearing a short-sleeved blue shirt, gray jeans and black shoes and was carrying a black book bag on his back. Police think the man is possibly in his 20s, Michael said.
The Raleigh robberies took place over a three-week period, starting March 22. In each instance, the suspect’s modus operandi was similar to the May 1 holdup in Durham: The man carried a handgun and took money and cellphones before fleeing, police spokesman Jim Sughrue said.
Witnesses in those incidents described the robber as a dark-complexioned man who may be 25 to 35 years old and stands about 6 feet tall, police reported.
The March 22 robbery took place about 8:30 p.m. at a Subway restaurant at 3901 Capital Blvd. The second robbery happened about 9:45 p.m. April 16 at the Papa John’s restaurant at 5620 Capital Blvd. In that case, the armed robber struck an employee with a handgun.
Two days later, around 9:30 p.m., the bewigged bandit hit another Subway restaurant at 4112 Pleasant Valley Road, police reported.
Durham police ask anyone with information to call 919-560-4415 or Crime Stoppers at 919-683-1200. Crime Stoppers pays cash rewards for information leading to arrests in felony cases, and callers never have to identify themselves.
Raleigh investigators ask anyone who may know the identity of the suspect or who has other information that might lead to an arrest to call Raleigh Crime Stoppers at 919-834-4357 or visit www.raleighcrimestoppers.org for text and emailing options. Crime Stoppers in Raleigh also pays cash rewards for tips that help solve cases.