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Port One Liquors robbed

The 13th armed robbery at a Decatur County business since June happened while hundreds of people watched the Bainbridge Christmas parade on Thursday night.

In perhaps the most daring robbery to date, two masked men held up Port One Liquors, located at 504 Albany Road in north Bainbridge, at about 7:20 p.m., not long after the parade began on Shotwell Street.

Although additional Public Safety officers and Sheriff’s deputies were patrolling the city while a few of their ranks escorted the large parade, the robbers managed to escape on foot.

When officers arrived at the store, an employee stated two masked men—one of them with a small revolver—entered the office and forced him to empty both cash registers at gunpoint. Both robbers exited the store heading east along the railroad tracks that run parallel with Back Street, a narrow, partially unpaved road.

The employee stated he pursued the robbers, firing five gunshots at them, apparently missing.

According to BPS Cpl. Aaron Brown, who reviewed the store’s security video, Suspect No. 1—who had the gun—was a black male who wore a long-sleeve black shirt, black faded shorts, black socks, black shoes, red gloves and a dark-colored ski mask with a log or writing on the back. Suspect No. 2 was a black male who wore a maroon hoodie sweatshirt, dark-colored ski mask and black shoes.

Police on lookout for robbery attempts

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is actively helping local law enforcement look for possible suspects. They are also holding regular meetings with other law enforcement in Georgia and Florida to talk about the robberies and other crimes.

The unsolved armed robberies during 2009 are as follows: Quick Buys on Georgia 97 South, July 9; Kangaroo on U.S. 27 North, July 16; Quick Buys in Climax, Sept. 7; Junior Mall on South Scott Street, Sept. 12; Kangaroo on U.S. 27 North, Oct. 2; The Winery on Louise Street, Oct. 8; Quick Buys on Old Whigham Dairy Road, Nov. 5; the Hardee’s on Shotwell Street, Nov. 21; Las Lomas on North Scott Street, Dec. 5; Port One Liquors on Albany Road, Dec. 10.

Law enforcement have arrested suspects in armed robberies occurring June 9 at Mr. Pip’s on U.S. 27 North and on Aug. 31 at the Quick Change in Attapulgus.

Some of the unsolved robberies from 2009—which police believe may be connected—have involved just one robber, while others have had two robbers. In at least three of the robberies, the robbers had or used handcuffs. A black and silver semi-automatic handgun has been seen by witnesses in more than one of the robberies. The robbers in multiple incidents have worn long-sleeved shirts and ski masks.

Anyone with information on any of the robberies can call the Sheriff’s Office at 248-3044 or Bainbridge Public Safety at 248-2038. Tips can be made anonymously. Anyone who sees suspicious activity around a store or place of business should call 911.