A shoplifter pulled a gun from his waistband and pointed it toward a Big Lots manager who was attempting to block the thief from leaving the store with a shopping cart full of unpaid merchandise late Tuesday afternoon, according to Riverhead Town police.
The suspect allegedly said that he did not have to pay for the merchandise while brandishing the gun at the female manager and another employee, police said. He walked out of the store and into the parking lot with two females whom he may have been working in concert with during the heist.
The incident occurred at about 5:40 p.m. when police received a call from the manager of the Riverhead Big Lots who said two women were attempting to steal assorted merchandise in a baby carriage. The manager called again immediately after saying a man was also attempting to leave the store with a shopping cart full of merchandise and refused to pay.
The manager was on the phone with a police dispatcher and was blocking the man from leaving when pulled the gun, according to a press release.
No injuries were reported.
Police said they believe all three suspects entered a vehicle and left the area.
Multiple police units responded to the store, including a K-9 unit and detectives. The suspects remain at large.
Police released a description of the suspect who had the gun. He is a Black man, standing approximately 5 foot 11. He had an average build, was in his late 40s to early 50s, was unshaven and was wearing a black jacket. He had a gray, hooded sweatshirt underneath the jacket. He wore black shoes, black pants and a black and gray knit cap.
Police are asking anyone with information to contact Riverhead police at 631-727-4500.