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Published: Sunday, 9/5/2004

West Toledo man faces 2 counts of robbery

A 27-year-old man was charged with robbing a Burger King restaurant on West Alexis Road at gunpoint yesterday and also was charged with robbing a Sterling Food Store in the same area earlier in the week.

John Howell of West Alexis Road faces aggravated robbery counts in both cases, police said.

The Burger King at 1110 West Alexis was robbed at 3 a.m. by a masked man who produced a handgun and ordered employees into a closet, locking them inside.

The man then opened the restaurant s safe, removed the money inside, and fled, police said.

Employees told investigators they suspected a current employee. When police went to that employee s apartment, they found Mr. Howell with the employee and took Mr. Howell into custody on five warrants: one for contempt of court in Oregon, one for attempt to commit an offense, and three traffic violations.

Police found that he was carrying a large amount of cash and money bands described by the restaurant employees.

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