A landmark video game store in Seattle’s Chinatown International District fell victim to an armed robbery this week, with the suspect reportedly telling a staff member his motive before fleeing with trading cards and a gaming console.
Pink Gorilla Games, which has been running at the corner of South King and 6th Ave. for 17 years, has suffered multiple break-ins in the past, but this is the first time it fell victim to an armed robbery.
The latest incident took place just after 5 p.m. on Monday. Staff member Jordan Carson, who was behind the register, knew something was off when a man dressed in dark clothes entered the store and stalled paying for items he had picked up.
“It was very casual, he had his hands in his pocket the whole time, it was a subtle motion, but it got the job done. I knew he had a gun,” Carson, 33, told FOX 13.
The suspect, who was seen in the store’s security footage, managed to flee with a PlayStation 3 console, Pokémon cards, Yu-Gi-Oh! cards and all the store’s cash. But unlike many similar robberies, the perp reportedly explained the reason behind his actions.
“He specifically mentioned that his brother or someone was in the hospital,” Carson said.
Store owner Cody Spencer said he has seen the suspect before. He recalled livestreaming on Twitch after closing time and witnessing the man demand to be let inside the store.
“I’m sorry, you have to go through this man, that’s really tough that you feel the need to do it,” Spencer, who goes by @DSKoopa on Twitch, told FOX 13.
Still, Spencer stressed that he is frustrated over losing thousands of dollars’ worth of merchandise. He told KOMO News he feels “terrible” and “uncertain” about staffing the business now.
“The sentiment is anger. I work almost every single day of the week and it’s things like this, the break-ins, armed robberies that completely make you think what I am doing, like what the hell is the point,” Spencer said.
There have been four break-ins at the store in the last six months. The last two occurred in July and reportedly resulted in losses worth $14,000.
Despite the robberies, Spencer said he does not want to move.
“This is our original location,” he wrote in a tweet on Tuesday. “It’s a major Seattle tourist attraction. Relocating would be heartbreaking and financially devastating.”
Investigation into the case continues. Anyone with information is urged to call the Seattle police’s tip line at 206-233-5000.