Strong arm robbery near Publix stuns shoppers

Posted at 8:56 PM, Apr 10, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-11 12:47:52-04

UPDATE (4/11) -- Cape Coral Police announced Monday that the stolen items have been recovered by the victim, who has declined to press charges on the suspects.


CAPE CORAL, Fla. - A strong-armed robbery near a busy Cape Coral Publix raises safety concerns for frequent shoppers.

The grocery store located along Santa Barbara S. and Veterans Parkway is often swarming with shoppers, which is why someone getting beaten and robbed there surprised regulars like Marie Itry.  "I didn't think it was this one. I just thought because it's so populated here and this one's so busy." said Itry.

According to Cape Coral police, around 6:00 Saturday evening, two males attacked a teen near the Publix. The suspects reportedly beating the victim then stealing his cell phone and backpack.

"There's more people out and about around 6 o'clock at night so you just really have to watch your surroundings and what you're doing, and who's around you at all times," said Karianna Massengill.

The violent crime is an unlikely occurrence in Cape Coral; however, Massengill says she's keeping her valuables and loved ones close now while she shops.  "I was concerned coming up here," said Massengill. "Making sure that we were safe around here especially with my children."

Investigators say the male suspects are believed to be teens. One is described as a Hispanic male, wearing a black sweater and red bandana. The second is a white male with red hair and freckles; possibly driving in a red sedan.

It's the second time in just two months someone was attacked in the area. Back in February a woman was robbed at gun point in the Lowes located along Veterans Parkway.

Now with a second shopping stick up happening in the area, residents are taking extra precautions.

"I brought my husband shopping with me today," said Barbara Hewitt.

"You can't live in fear, but you should be aware of what's around you," said Itry.