DES MOINES, Iowa -- Instead of being seen as a convenience store, Des Moines' Git-N-Go locations have become a convenient target for robberies.
"We think that several, if not all of them, are connected, and we are hoping to put an end to this before somebody gets hurt," said Des Moines Police Sergeant Paul Parizek.
Since February 25th, nine Des Moines area Git-N-Go stores have been robbed by a man who is disguising himself on occasion.
Parizek said, "The suspect hasn't displayed one yet, but all the clerks feel he has been in possession of a weapon."
The robberies took place two times at 3940 East 29th, once at 3733 Easton, once at 100 Watrous, twice at 4224 NW 2nd, twice at 865 42nd, and once at 1307 Army Post.
Parizek said, "I don't know what it is, but they seem to be a magnet for this type of thing."
Several of those same locations were hit in a rash of robberies last spring.
"I don't know if we will know if it's somebody robbing Git-N-Gos because of the rash last year, but the community stepped up last year and we were able to get those people federally charged, and we are hoping for the same outcome."
Last March, police investigated 17 different robberies with more than a dozen of them targeting Git-N-Go gas stations around the metro. In the end, four people were charged in the robberies last November.
The current suspect may also be receiving help from an unidentified woman.
"We believe she may have a support role. We are looking at getting her identified. We don't know if this is something she's a willing participant in," said Parizek.
Jack Harris lives within walking distance of the 42nd street Git-N-Go, and thinks the late-night hours make them an easy target.
"Anything that stays open that late at night, I think, asks for it a little bit, and they've been held up several times," he said.
Steve Sherer also lives nearby and said, "If I had been out there watching over my fence I could have seen it because it's that close."
He's surprised such a quiet neighborhood could have a business targeted by crime.
"Well that's disconcerting. I don't know what to say."
Police hope pictures from Git-N-Go surveillance cameras can help catch those involved and keep the neighborhoods quiet for good this time.
"You're going to get caught eventually. It's rare you don't get caught, and you are going to prison and going to be there a long time," said Parizek.
Des Moines police are also looking into whether the suspect has been under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of each robbery.