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Masked man robs Vape City
Vape City armed robbery.jpg
McMinnville Police Department is investigating an armed robbery of a vape store on Old Smithville Highway. - photo by Lisa Hobbs

An armed robber took advantage of the pandemic and wore a facemask to hide his identity Friday morning.

Before the pandemic, walking into a business establishment wearing a facemask would have been cause for concern. Not anymore.

Vape City, located on Old Smithville Highway, has been robbed twice by an individual or individuals donning facemasks. The most recent incident was Friday at approximately 8:35 a.m. 

“The suspect entered the businesses wearing a facemask and asked if the cashier had change for a larger bill,” said McMinnville Police Lt. Detective Tony Jenkins. “When the registered was open, the suspect demanded money.” 

According to the caller’s report to 911, the individual was armed and was “the same guy who came in about a month ago and did the same thing.” 

Jenkins confirmed this is the second time Vape City has been targeted in a similar manner. 

“It wasn’t a month ago,” said Jenkins. “I think that incident occurred back in March, but I don’t have that report in front of me at this time. I do believe that suspect was also wearing a facemask.”

Once money was handed over, the individual left on foot going outbound on Old Smithville Highway. The amount is being withheld, as well as some other details of the crime.

“There’s not much more I can share at this time,” said Jenkins. “It’s an ongoing investigation.”