By Lisa E. Crowley
BROCKTON—A clerk and a customer at Bud’s Variety at the corner of Nilsson Street and Warren Avenue Sunday morning were waved to the ground at the point of a silver handgun by a skinny, Spanish-speaking man with lots of freckles on his face.
A clerk who works for the family that operates the store and would not give his name said robberies at the corner convenience store are becoming as commonplace as regular paying customers.
“It’s happens all the time,” he said. “Not twice, but three, four, five, six times—You can’t count. It’s much worse than anywhere else that I’ve been,” said the man, who is about 40 years old and originally from India.
He said he has worked in stores in Lynn and Beverly and has had nothing like the countless robberies at Bud’s.
He said he has been to court and sometimes the police catch the suspects, but other times they do not.
He said he is shocked at how often it has happened at Bud’s and blames drugs, bad parenting, parents on drugs and people’s desires for things they want and not wanting to work for them as the reasons for the number of robberies at his store.
“They need to push all the bad people into the Atlantic—get rid of them,” he said. “I never would have thought I would see something like this in America—it’s not poverty, the government gives food, we have plenty of food—you want to see poverty go to India,” he said.
The latest robbery, according to the Brockton Police log, happened Sunday morning, Jan. 2 at about 9:40 a.m. when the clerk and a customer were made to lie on the floor of the tiny store.
The freckled robber held a gun on the clerk and customer as they lay on the floor while an accomplice--another Hispanic-looking man described as heavy-set and wearing a mask--tied the clerk and customer’s hands with duct tape.
The robber’s stole about $300 and the clerk’s wallet.
The customer was described as a black male, about 6 feet, 4 inches tall. The man left the store once the robbers left.
The clerk told police he did not recognize either of the robbers—both estimated as between 25 and 30 years old and wearing black-hooded sweatshirts.
The clerk also told police he did not recognize the customer involved in the robbery.
The Bud’s Variety robbery came hours before a similar robbery at Van's Asian Market at about 6 p.m. Sunday.
Police reported Van's Asian Market was also robbed in a similar fashion Sunday when two males walked in wearing masks and took all the cash.
A witness told police the robbers brandished a handgun and spoke Spanish as they told her they didn't want to shoot her and not to look at them. The witness told police the men duct-taped her friend and told the witness to get down on the floor and not to look.
It is unclear if the witness was also duct-taped.
The two Sunday robberies differ from another that took place Thursday, Dec. 30 at about 2:40 p.m. at Cumberland Farms, 984 Main St., when a white male described by police as in his early 30’s, told a clerk at the store to hand over money if he did not want to be shot. A gun was not shown and after grabbing a handful of cash from the register ran out of the store up Willow Street.
Police arrested Anthony J. Gaultier, 23, of S. Easton and charged him with armed robbery following the call.