PALO ALTO (TUSEN SF) — Eight people broke into a Palo Alto smoking room, whipped the store clerk with a gun and made off with merchandise and cash from the ledger, police said Friday.
The theft took place Thursday night just before 10 p.m. at the Raw Smoke Shop at 265 California Ave. The clerk, a man in his 50s, told police that at least two of the robbers were armed with handguns when they entered the store. One of them ordered the clerk to the ground and another whipped him on the back of the head with a pistol.
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While the thieves stole goods and cash from the cash register, the clerk remained on the ground the entire time. He told police he believed most of the suspects were black, but all wore face coverings and he could not provide further descriptions.
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All of the suspects fled the store before police arrived and the victim could not see from his position whether they fled on foot or in a vehicle. The clerk suffered minor head injuries but refused to receive medical treatment, police said.
Police released surveillance footage of the eight suspects and said there had been no similar cases in Palo Alto in the recent past.
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Anyone with information about this incident has been asked to call Palo Alto police at (650) 329-2413. Anonymous tips can be emailed to [email protected] or sent by text or voicemail to (650) 383-8984.