Brentwood police looking for help after robbery in broad daylight

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by KMOV.com Staff

KMOV.com

Posted on August 15, 2012 at 9:03 PM

Updated Wednesday, Aug 15 at 10:21 PM

Brentwood Square Shopping Center

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BRENTWOOD, Mo (KMOV.com) -- Brentwood police are issuing a rare call for help tonight, following an armed robbery Sunday afternoon. 

It’s the second violent crime in the region’s premiere shopping district in the past three months.

The Brentwood Square parking lot was crowded Sunday afternoon, and one shopper thought it was a perfectly safe place to eat her lunch in her car.

But police say two men saw it as an opportunity to rob her. The two men forced the woman to drive to an ATM and withdraw money.

Police are making good on their promise to step up patrols following the armed robbery in broad daylight, but the police chief calls the recent rash of crimes here in Brentwood, “unprecedented,” and he’s calling on businesses to help him stop it.

Managers of local shops got a letter from police asking for employees’ help. Natalie Williams manages a Pier 1. She says the recent events have her unnerved.

“A little nervous and a little scared - just because I normally feel really safe here,” she said. The letter from police echoes Williams’ concerns.

“The glaring concern of our department has been the amount of confrontation with our citizens and visitors to Brentwood,” said Williams, reading from the letter. “Some involving weapons and physical violence.”

Brentwood police are still looking for the robbers. Detectives discovered that an employee had seen the two men acting suspicious prior to the robbery, but didn’t report it to police.

Officers say a simple call may have prevented a crime. Now, they’re hoping their presence will help do the same.

“We’ve had a police officer come in the store and walk around, just to kind of be in the store and have his presence here, so I think that’s a good step,” said Williams.

While the police are focused on restoring piece of mind to shoppers and employees, not all residents are feeling as shaken.

“I’m careful, I’m cautious about what’s going on,” said Clare Ernst. “But I’m not going to change my life because somebody’s trying to frighten me.”

Until police track down the robbers, officers are asking business employees and shoppers to report anything suspicious they spot.

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