Two Asian American women have fallen prey to a series of robberies targeting restaurant owners in Montgomery County, Maryland.
The first incident reportedly took place in Wheaton just before 11 p.m. on Jan. 1.
The victim of this assault, who had just returned home from her restaurant in Takoma Park, was approached by three men.
One attacker hit her head before stealing her purse, which contained her car keys and cash from her business.
On Feb. 7, someone stole the victim’s car while she was working. The police believe the suspects who took her car keys were responsible.
The second incident reportedly occurred on Feb. 16 in the area of the 1800 block of Briggs Road.
The victim claims she was driving home from her restaurant in Silver Spring when a silver SUV bumped her car from behind.
After stepping out of her car to inspect the damage, two men hit her head and pinned her to the ground. One pointed a gun at her while the other stole her purse, which contained cash from her restaurant.
“They hit my head and then put me on the ground. I was dizzy at the time and it was scary. They came to me and said if I didn’t give them money, then they will kill me and will shoot me and I was scared,” the victim told WUSA9.
The suspects managed to flee with $200. They used the stolen vehicle from the first robbery, according to WTOP.
The Montgomery police believe the incidents are not racially-motivated. A third robbery targeted a Hispanic couple who own a restaurant in Hyattsville.
But just like the first two incidents, the suspects in question also intercepted the victims as they drove home, this time in Fairland.
“It appears these suspects are watching these business owners exit their place of business and then following them home,” police spokeswoman Cpl. Rebecca Innocenti said.
Local business owners and employees are being urged to remain alert and observant. Police should be called whenever necessary.
Anyone with information about the robberies can call the Major Crimes Division at 240-773- 5070. Anonymous tips can also be sent to the Crime Solvers of Montgomery County at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477).
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