Texas cop arrives at doughnut shop seconds before robbery

An officer lied in wait while robbers attempted to take cash from store owner

By Robert Wilonsky
The Dallas Morning News

DALLAS — The headline on the Dallas Police Department’s blog reads like an Onion item: “Cop Foils Donut Shop Robbery.” But according to the details and video provided by police, it looks like the doughnut shop’s owner also did much of the thwarting.

Police say that at 7:30 this morning, off-duty officer Christopher Berry — “in full police uniform traveling to an off-duty job” — pulled up to the Joy Donut shop at 3502 Simpson Stuart Road, at the Bonnie View intersection. And when he was parking, police say, Berry saw two men hiding near the edge of the building, “peering into the donut shop.” Both were wearing wool hoods (and one, a white mask), and had white socks over their hands.

Berry knew what was about to go down, so, police say, he stayed in his car and watched the two men go into the doughnut store. In the surveillance cam video provided by police, you can see what happened next:

The pair ran into the store, split up and went for both cash registers. Only one — a suspect in a white mask — was successful, but not that successful: Police tell The Dallas Morning News that the register was empty. He just didn’t know it yet.

The store owner ran out from behind the counter to stop the second suspect trying to remove the bolted-down register. He chased the two men out of the store, and one of the suspects hit him as they ran out the door.

Meanwhile, police say: “While the suspects were inside the business, Officer Berry moved to a tactically safe position behind his vehicle and continued to observe the offense. When the suspects fled out of the front door of the business, Officer Berry made his presence known by giving the loud verbal command ‘Dallas Police, stop!”’

That was enough to stop one suspect, but not the other — the man wearing the white mask. He managed to get away with the empty cash register, which was later recovered in a nearby field, police say.

Maj. Max Geron says Berry didn’t go into the store in order “not to escalate the situation.” And, yes, he said, “You could second-guess [his decision to stay outside] all day long,” but in this instance, at least, no one was seriously hurt or shot, and one of two suspects was arrested.

Berry arrested a man police have identified as 18-year-old Kristopher Jones. The second suspect, who police have not named, is described as a black male of unknown age standing about 5-foot-9 and weighing about 150. Neither man was armed.

Police are asking that anyone who knows the ID of the second suspect to call Detective Butler at 214-671-3584.

Copyright 2015 The Dallas Morning News

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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