A suspect armed with a knife and bat robbed Nanaimo’s Harewood Arms Beer and Wine store on Saturday. (Photo submitted)

Man in Halloween costume robs Vancouver Island liquor store

A suspect armed with a knife and bat robbed Nanaimo’s Harewood Arms Beer and Wine store on Saturday

It’s a bit too early for Halloween, but a man in what could be a Grim Reaper costume robbed a Nanaimo liquor store for an undisclosed amount of cash last weekend.

According to the Nanaimo RCMP, an individual armed with a knife and bat and dressed up in a skeleton costume and mask walked into the Harewood Arms Beer and Wine store on Saturday at around 10:40 p.m. and began banging on the counter demanding money from the two clerks.

Immediately after receiving cash, the suspect fled and was last seen running toward Howard Avenue according to police, who were called to the scene but couldn’t locate the individual.

The suspect is believed to be a man who is between 5-foot-6 and 5-foot-9 with a medium build and was last seen wearing a black gown, white shirt, gloves and mask.

Const. Gary O’Brien, Nanaimo RCMP spokesman, said there were no customers inside the store at the time of the robbery but that it was a traumatizing experience for the two store clerks.

“It would be quite terrifying to say the least,” he said.

O’Brien said the bat and knife were recovered near the scene and that police believe the suspect had a vehicle nearby. He said while police have no direct evidence to suggest the suspect has committed robbery before, they believe this wasn’t the first time.

“It was well planned out,” O’Brien said. “The chances of them doing it before are probably fairly high.”

Anyone with information is asked to call the Nanaimo RCMP at 250-754-2345 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.


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