Volunteers warned about recent robberies at fireworks stands


LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Law enforcement is urging operators of fireworks stands to stay vigilant following some recent robberies. Police have released a sketch of one of the suspects and images of some vehicles.

Metro Police are searching for two armed suspects who have been robbing charity stands in the valley.

The volunteers, who are raising money for church charities, were robbed at gunpoint, police said.

There are surveillance cameras in the area which recorded everything and police are looking at the videos to try and track down the thieves.

Police released images of the cars believed to have been used in the string of armed robberies that are targeting charity firework stands. In each crime, police say a car pulls directly to the booth and one to two men then demand cash at gunpoint.

The images show two different possible getaway cars.  One a silver four-door sedan with black rims and a rear spoiler. The second is described as a dark gray SUV.

Duane Washun says he had no choice but to give up their day’s worth of sales Tuesday night.  The booth at Charleston and Rainbow boulevards is fundraising for Living Grace Foursquare Church.

“Things were going along good. A couple of guys come up and I said can I help you? And he said ‘just looking at the fireworks’ and next thing I know my friend motions me to come over and this gentlemen is brandishing a weapon, Washun said.

As a non-profit, every dollar goes a long way for their church programs.

Volunteers at this fireworks stand at Charleston and Rainbow boulevards were robbed Tuesday night.

“We pray for the men who robbed us last night. In fact, when I came into work there was one other guy and two of our women who were here and I said let’s grab a hand and we just started praying,” Washun said.

Less than three miles away, crooks also robbed the stand at Charleston Boulevard and Durango Drive. They’re also collecting funds for a charity — the local Knights of Columbus catholic organization.

Washun is urging other volunteers at fireworks stands across the valley to stay alert.

“When you’re in a 24-hour day town anything can happen,” he said.

Both men are believed to between 20 and 25 years of age. One of the men has numerous facial piercings.

If you have information and would like to remain anonymous, you can contact Crimestoppers at (702) 385-5555.

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