Suspect has short flight following robbery

A man who robbed a gas station in Nanaimo's Harewood neighbourhood got away with it for mere few minutes before he was nabbed by police Monday.

A man who robbed a gas station in Nanaimo’s Harewood neighbourhood got away with it for mere few minutes before he was nabbed by police Monday.

The robbery happened at the Mid Island Co-op Gas Bar on Eighth Street shortly before 5 p.m. when a man with a knife grabbed the clerk in a headlock in front of several customers. He held the knife to the clerk’s neck and demanded cash from the till.

The suspect fled after an undisclosed amount of money was handed over.

From the store’s surveillance footage and statements from the witnesses, police had a solid description of the suspect. Within 10 minutes of the robbery, an officer spotted a man matching the description of the suspect who was taken into custody without incident. A knife believed to have been used in the robbery was also recovered.

Police also retrieved the stolen cash from a residence nearby.

Dustin James Servis, 26, of Nanaimo, appeared before a Nanaimo provincial court judge Tuesday charged with one count of robbery.

Police recommended a charge of one count of robbery against a 26-year-old Nanaimo man who is known to police. He was held in custody overnight to appear before a Nanaimo provincial court judge Tuesday.

Const. Gary O’Brien, Nanaimo RCMP spokesman, said the case was a good example of police and the community working together.

“The gas bar had excellent, state-of-the-art surveillance cameras and witnesses came forth without hesitation,” O’Brien said. “So we used those coupled with surveillance cameras, put the information out to the members and based on that, they located the guy and he was in the bucket.”

O’Brien said the clerk was shaken up, but not injured.