String of robberies in Moncton area has RCMP on alert
A rash of robberies at banks and pharmacies in the Moncton area over the weekend has RCMP officers on high alert.
Codiac RCMP say the first robbery happened at the Bank of Nova Scotia on Mountain Road around 5 p.m.
They say a man entered the bank, armed with a firearm, and demanded cash. The suspect took an undisclosed amount of money and fled the scene.
About an hour later, a man robbed the Royal Bank of Canada on Champlain Street in Dieppe, N.B.
The suspect entered the bank with a firearm demanding cash. The man fled with an undisclosed amount of money.
Both men were described as between five-foot-eight and six feet tall and spoke English.
Police have not yet determined whether the robberies are connected.
"Often times these armed robberies, when we get jumps or spikes in armed robberies, they are related,” said Sgt. Mark Janes. “In this particular case, that's all under investigation and it's something that the unit will be looking into."
Less than 24 hours later, officers responded to the Jean Coutu Pharmacy in the 1700 block of Mountain Road around 3:35 p.m.
Police say a man entered the store with a handgun. He fled the scene on foot and was last seen heading towards Frampton Avenue.
There were no injuries in any of the incidents.
Staff Sgt. Mark Janes says the city of Moncton does see peaks or influxes in armed robberies, and it could be what they're seeing now.
"Those armed robberies are usually linked to drugs and depending on the criminal element that are around at a particular time and the need for drugs we can sudden increases in armed robberies, so no, that's not really out of the ordinary for us to see," said Sgt. Janes.
Over the past two weeks, the Greater Moncton area has had its fair share of this type of crime. In July, a woman was arrested and charged after seven armed robberies in a variety of locations. Since then, two hotels and three convenience stores have been targeted, by both male and female suspects, most carrying a firearm and demanding money.
Staff Sgt. Janes says the businesses that have been targeted are doing the right thing by complying with the demands of the person that's committing the offence.
"There's not a whole lot more really that they can do unless we start getting like the states and putting bars up and only allowing certain hours," said Janes.
Anyone with information on the robberies is asked to contact Codiac Regional RCMP or Crime Stoppers.