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Bumbling Bandit Arrested After Restaurant Robbery, Two Failed Carjackings

After making off with a restaurant’s tip jar in the International District Thursday night, a blundering bandit was foiled at every turn as he tried to flee the scene.

The 40-year-old suspect walked into a restaurant in the 600 block of 5 Avenue South around 8 PM, and told employees to hand over all the cash in their register.

During the stick-up, the suspect flashed something long, metal and cylindrical at restaurant staff, who believed the suspect had a gun. However, rather than handing over the contents of the register, employees told the suspect to take the meager contents of their tip jar instead.

After grabbing the jar—which only contained about $15—the suspect demanded money from several patrons inside the restaurant. When the customers declined to hand anything over to the suspect, he attempted to rally them for an apparent mass dine-and-dash, informing patrons he was “there to help” them flee the restaurant.

When no one took the suspect up on his offer, he dashed for a side door and tried to kick it open. The suspect discovered the door was locked when he bounced off it and hurtled backwards onto the floor.

Undeterred by his poorly-executed egress, the suspect ran to another door, kicked a restaurant employee as he exited the building and fled to a nearby parking lot.

The suspect’s clumsy crime spree continued in the lot, where he tried—and failed—to snatch a woman’s car keys from her hand as she stood next to her vehicle. The woman whipped out her cellphone and began filming the suspect, who took off across the street to a gas station.

At the gas station, the suspect attempted to carjack another motorist, demanding a man’s keys. The man refused, but offered to give the suspect a ride instead.

The suspect turned down the driver’s offer, and instead went inside the gas station, purchased a beverage, and took a break behind the business.

Officers arrived and took the beleaguered bandit into custody.

The suspect admitted he had robbed the restaurant while armed with a flashlight—not a gun—but claimed he had only entered the business after hearing screams coming from inside.

Employees at the restaurant didn’t provide police with any information about the supposed screams, but reported the robber had made off with about $15.

However, when police searched the suspect, they only found $7 and a cell phone in his pockets.

Officers booked the suspect into the King County Jail for investigation of Robbery