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Smoker Friendly robbed

November 02, 2006|by PEPPER BALLARD

Four cartons of Newport cigarettes and cash were taken during a robbery of Smoker Friendly by a weapon-wielding man Wednesday afternoon, Hagerstown Police Department Sgt. Paul Kifer said.

Kifer said the man, who appeared to be 18 to 20 years old, robbed the store at 1:16 p.m. and ran toward the back of the Dual Highway shopping center.

A police dog sniffed the area behind the store toward a nearby residential area shortly after the robbery, but the man was not found, Kifer said. Washington County Sheriff's Department deputies who were in the area when the robbery was reported also looked but did not find the robber, Kifer said.

The robber is described as a tall, thin white man who was wearing a dark hooded sweat shirt.

Police planned to review video surveillance from the store. Only one employee was at the store at the time of the robbery, Kifer said.

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Kifer said police were not sure if a white Ford Focus seen leaving the area near the store was connected to the crime.

Smoker Friendly has been burglarized in the past, but the business has not been robbed before, Kifer said.

In October 2005, the front glass door to the business was found broken and tobacco products were found stolen.

The business' windows are now shielded by bars.

Kifer asks anyone with information about Wednesday's robbery to call the department's criminal investigation division at 301-790-3700, ext. 234.

Tipsters who wish to remain anonymous may e-mail police at crimetip@hagerstownpd.org.

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