Potato-wielding man tried to rob store, dry-cleaners

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Talk about a half-baked crime.

Providence police say a man carrying a potato disguised as a gun unsuccessfully attempted to rob a convenience store and a dry-cleaners in the city’s Charles neighborhood Monday afternoon.

The first report came around 2 p.m. when police reported to Branch Avenue convenience store where the store’s manager said he chased the suspect off with a baseball bat after he shouted “give me the money” to the cashier, according to a police report obtained by WPRI.com.

The suspect was described as a white or light-skinned Hispanic male and was about 5’7” tall. He was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and blue jeans.

Minutes later, police reported to a Charles Street dry-cleaners where a female clerk said a man fitting the same description and carrying a potato yelled “I need the money.”

The clerk handed him a counterfeit $20 bill from a decoy cash register before he walked off.

She described the suspect as being in his twenties with white lips. She said he was of average height and a thin build.

Both locations had surveillance systems, but no arrests have been made.

The original version of this report incorrectly stated the incidents occurred on Tuesday afternoon. The incidents occurred on Monday.

Dan McGowan ( dmcgowan@wpri.com ) covers politics, education and the city of Providence for WPRI.com. Follow him on Twitter: @danmcgowan

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