Armed trio wanted on both sides of bay

- The same group of criminals is suspected by police of robbing two convenience stores on both sides of Tampa Bay Tuesday morning.

Surveillance cameras recorded two masked men bursting through the door of a 7-Eleven convenience store in on 66th Street North in Pinellas Park a little after 3 a.m. Police said one of the men had a gun drawn.

As a woman, who was also wearing a mask, stood watch outside, the two men take the cash register drawer before all three run away.

LINK: Watch the Pinellas Park video

Roughly three and a half hours later, investigators believe the same three suspects committed an almost-identical robbery at a Marathon gas station on East Fowler Avenue in Tampa. Security cameras also recorded that crime.

"Since this happened a short time earlier in Pinellas Park, we are going to be working with the Pinellas Park Police Department to determine if they are the same suspects," said Andrea Davis, a Tampa police spokesperson. "There's no question because of the quality of the video, that someone is going to recognize the three suspects in that video. The question is, will they do the right thing?"

LINK: Watch the Tampa video

In a news release, a Pinellas Park spokesperson said the 7-Eleven robbery "appears to be related" to the crime in Tampa.

A manager at the Marathon gas station declined an interview with FOX 13, but a customer was stunned while watching the video.

"If this can happen at any gas station, it can happen anywhere," said Alex Zarazel, who is also a student at the University of South Florida, which is close by. "I hope they catch them. I hate thieves. Thieves are the low lives of everything."

The crimes really hit home for A.J. Draper, a manager at Greek Unique, which is in the same shopping center as the Marathon.

"I just watched the video and honestly I'm pretty terrified just because it happened right over there, I work right there and it's just, it can happen anywhere," Draper said. "I can only imagine what it would have been like to be on the other side of the register."

Anyone with information can contact Tampa police, Pinellas Park police, or Crime Stoppers, which is offering a $3,000 reward.

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