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New Marathon not open for business, but robbers find a way to serve themselves

Wednesday, September 11, 2013 - 12:55 pm

The new Marathon East Side Food Mart, 3217 E. Washington Blvd., isn't open for business, but that didn't stop three robbers from breaking in, trapping a man working there inside a closet and escaping with his belongings.

Shortly after 4:30 a.m. Wednesday, Fort Wayne Police were called to the store. There a man who had been working inside, trying to stock it for its upcoming opening, told police that three men sneaked into the closed store by coming through its garage. He described the robbers as being black males, all about 25 years old, black, and wearing black pants and t-shirt, with hats and gloves. One was 5 feet 8 inches tall, 150 pounds; another was 5 feet 9 inches tall, 160 pounds; and the third was 6 feet tall, 180 pounds. Two of the men had black semi-automatic handguns, and the third had a chrome revolver, according to the police report.

The robbers told the man working inside the store to get on the floor. Then they combed through his pockets and took his cell phone, cash, a wallet and a set of keys to his vehicle. They took his belt and used it to tie the door of a closet they forced him to enter, according to the report. They had wanted to get into the store's safe, but -- not being open for business yet -- it had no safe, police reported.

The belted door of the closet didn't hold the robbery victim for long, though, and he got out in time to see one of the robbers driving off in his 1999 black GMC Sierra while the other two ran away. The truck and the armed pedestrians were last seen on Kitch Street, police reported.

The victim said it sounded as though the robbers were dumping some of the store inventory into a trash can, but soon after the robbery, the victim wasn't sure what items might have been taken after he was closed in the closet.