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Man uses hammer in phone store robbery

Surveillance photo

A visitor to a Castor Gardens cell phone store on Christmas Eve seemed like a friendly enough fellow when he approached the front counter, shook a clerk’s hand, then browsed the shop for about a half-hour before leaving.

But nobody was in the holiday spirit about 15 minutes later when the same patron returned to the store, bashed the clerk in the head with a hammer and stole money from a cash register.

Police seek the public’s help in identifying the robber and have posted surveillance video of the sneak attack on YouTube.com. The clip appears under the heading “6930 Bustleton Ave.” on the Philadelphia Police channel. That’s the location of Alive City Wireless.

The crime occurred at about 12:15 p.m. according to a time stamp on the video. The robber asked the clerk to change a $10 bill. When the employee opened the register drawer, the crook pulled a hammer from his pocket, struck the employee and grabbed the money.

The robber fled with an undisclosed amount of cash. He was described as black, 27 to 37 years old, 5 feet 11 inches tall, with a medium build, green jacket and gray and black pants. Call 215–686-TIPS or text to PPD TIP to report information. ••

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