Two robberies occured at a couple of Visalia gas stations early Wednesday.
The first near East Mineral King Avenue and Ben Maddox Way. The second just a few miles away at a 7-Eleven on Walnut Avenue near Court Street.
Police say the same suspects are to blame: 21-year-old Joshua Del Villar and a 17-year-old.
The store clerk says he wasn’t supposed to be at work until 6 a.m., but couldn’t sleep and went in early to get something to eat. He says he’s just thankful to be alive.
Ryan Glispey describes the cell phone video of the moment two masked suspects, one armed with a shotgun, entered the 7-Eleven around 2 a.m.
“That’s when they came in and then there’s him with a gun over there with me, and now he’s running over here and then he came back over with a gun and yelling at me and I wouldn’t get down and then he’s getting the money, then he comes back over to me with a gun threatening me and then they get the money and they both took off running,” Glispey says.
Glispey, an Army veteran and now a student getting his masters, still shaken over it all, recalls the moment he feared for his life.
“They had a gun at me the whole time I thought they were going to shoot me in the head or in the back and so I just keep telling myself they’re gonna shoot,” he says.
Glispey says it was just himself and a younger employee at the time. “He gave them the money and everything and complied like he should and they were gone.”
Visalia Police say the suspects were caught and arrested after being found hiding in a shed.
“(We) made notification to these two individuals. They chose not to come out. The police K-9 was utilized to apprehend one of them and of the other subject gave up,” explains Sgt. Gary Williams with the Visalia Police Department.
Inside the shed, police say the masks, cash and shotgun were with Del Villar and the teen suspect.
Police say about an hour and a half before the 7-Eleven robbery, both suspects robbed the mobile gas station on East Mineral King Avenue near Ben Maddox Way.
Glispey says innocent people could have died over a few hundred dollars.
Both suspects were booked into jail and are facing two counts of armed robbery.