SOUTHMAYD, TX -- Police say they've arrested a man who was caught on survelliance video holding up a Southmayd convenience store Thursday. They say he could be connected to other store robberies in the area.
Morgan Downing spoke to the terrified store clerk, who says he's just thankful to be alive.
It was a scary moment for a convenience store owner and customer here at the Stop and Shop in Southmayd, after a man walked into the store with a gun, demanding cash.
"He pointed a gun to me and tells me 'I need cash. I need cash,'" Gurmaiel Singh said.
Stop and Shop convenience store owner Gurmaiel Singh was behind the counter when a man with a mask came inside and pointed a gun straight at him
"And I tell him I'm scared. I can't open the cash register, you open it yourself," he said.
The suspect, police identify as 22-year-old Jimmy Mariano of Howe, is wearing a hoodie turned backwards with holes cut out for his eyes. The same way the suspect in a recent sherman Valero robbery wore his hoodie. Sherman police say they're looking into any possible connection.
"My mind is just like he's going to shoot me right now. So, that's why I don't go in front of him I go back a little bit. I say he'd shoot me anyway. So, I need to go a little bit, protect myself you know. So, that's why I come behind here, behind the refrigerator," Singh said.
As Singh was hiding, an unsuspecting woman walked into the store.
"And the lady was, of course she was caught off guard because she had no idea when she walked in that there was anyone doing anything like that. So, she was a little upset," Southmayd police Chief Ron Blackwell said.
As Mariano was threatening her, Singh dialed 911 and ran to the back room of the store for safety. Mariano jumped behind the counter, tried to open the cash register and failed. That's when he ran from the store into this wooded area.
"We went on north and found him. Saw him running through the brush headed north towards Elliot road between Highway 289 and Cody Lane. With plenty of people we were able to push him into an area and had him surrounded and were able to effect an arrest," Blackwell said.
Mariano was booked into the Grayson County Jail for robbery and prior warrants.
Sherman police are investigating whether or not he is in fact the same man who robbed the Sherman Valero off 1417.
As for the stop and shop owner, he says he's thankful no one was hurt.
"I'm lucky I'm alive and I'm not getting hurt. Thank God, you know," he said.