BELLINGHAM - An armed robber remains at large Monday, April 8, after holding a Fairhaven video store clerk at gunpoint this weekend.
Nic Rassat said he'd just walked into the bathroom at 7:55 p.m. Saturday, when he heard the door swing open. Rassat, an employee of the store for the past five years, came back around the corner expecting a customer. Instead, a white man wearing a tan coat, green beanie, and a white bandana over the lower half of his face stood at the counter, pointing a small black revolver at him. Nobody else was in the store.
Rassat heard the gun click once. In an interview Monday, Rassat recalled the man saying, "I'm gonna need the money."
For a split-second Rassat thought about stalling or refusing - then he reconsidered and handed over a stack of $20 bills. Once the suspect had about $400 in his hand, the man said, "that's enough" and ran out the door, according to Rassat.
"I got hit with a super adrenaline rush," Rassat said. "I just gave him the money and, boom, he was gone."
There still enough daylight to see outside, but Rassat lost sight of the suspect near the northeast corner of the building, 1213 Harris Ave. The man might have headed north on Mill Avenue.
It's not clear if the suspect had a bike or car waiting for him.
Rassat guessed the man was in his 30s. He was about 6 feet tall, with long blond hair. A customer told him someone matching that description had been lingering on a bench outside near an ATM a few minutes before the robbery. The customer didn't return a phone call from a reporter.
Rob Olason, who opened Trek Video in the late 1980s, said the theft has compelled him to invest in security cameras for the store. No police sketches or photos of the suspect have been released.
Anyone with tips should call Bellingham police at 360-778-8800. After hours, call 911.