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Robbers hit three North Idaho locations in three days

Authorities are investigating three armed robberies in three days in the Coeur d’Alene area, and two of the holdups may be related, said Coeur d’Alene Police Sgt. Christie Wood.

Robberies in Coeur d’Alene on Friday and Sunday are being turned over to the Kootenai County violent crimes regional task force comprised of investigators from Coeur d’Alene Police, Post Falls Police, the Kootenai County sheriff and FBI. The sheriff’s office also is investigating a Saturday robbery in Hayden.

“These are very serious,” Wood said this morning.

The latest robbery occurred Sunday about 10:50 p.m. at a Dairy Queen at 305 W. Appleway in Coeur d’Alene. A man wearing a ski mask pointed a gun at three employees and demanded money.

He fled on foot, running west on Appleway. A Kootenai County sheriff’s dog tracked the robber to a field behind Appleway and Anton Avenue before losing the scent.

Wood said the employees were very traumatized by the incident.

The robber was described as white, in his late 20s, 5-foot-8 and slender with blue eyes and glasses. He was wearing a black ski mask, black gloves, a gray sweatshirt, blue jeans and white Nike shoes.

On Friday just before 8 p.m., a robbery occurred at Piggies Deli and Market, 2001 E. Sherman Ave.

A clerk said he was at the cash register when a person with a handgun announced the robbery and ordered customers to get down. He took money from the cash register and then robbed two customers who were crouched on the floor.

Witnesses said he displayed a Glock or Sig Sauer brand hand gun.

The robber fled around the west side of the building and disappeared. A sheriff’s dog was unable to track the robber.

The description was similar to the one reported Sunday except for a discrepancy in height. Wood said victim or witness descriptions of the same suspect often differ between two crimes.

In the Friday holdup, the robber was described as white, 6-foot tall and thin with wire-rimmed glasses. He was wearing white tennis shoes, a dark-hooded sweatshirt, blue jeans and a dark cloth over the lower half of his face.

On Saturday, a robbery occurred at Super 1 Foods in Hayden. A man held a clerk and customer at gunpoint and had the clerk empty a cash drawer before fleeing on foot.

A K-9 followed a trail a short distance and then lost the track. Deputies said the suspect probably fled from there in a vehicle. The sheriff’s office did not provide the robber’s description.