Crime

Man reportedly uses sawed-off shotgun to rob Bellingham Cruisin Coffee drive-thru

A 20-year-old man reportedly robbed the Cordata neighborhood Cruisin Coffee drive-thru last weekend at gunpoint with a sawed-off shotgun that was later found to be stolen.

Bellingham police booked Angel Julius Rosso into Whatcom County Jail Wednesday, Oct. 9, on suspicion of felony harassment, third-degree theft and first-degree robbery. On Thursday, additional charges for possession of a stolen firearm and possession of an unlawful firearm were added.

At approximately 9:58 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 5, a witness called 911 to report seeing an armed robbery at the Cruisin Coffee in the 300 block of Calluna Court, Lt. Claudia Murphy told The Bellingham Herald.

The witness reportedly told officers that she was at the drive-thru window and had just paid and been handed her drink when she saw a male wearing a mask and carrying gun come around the corner and point the gun through the window. The witness told police she pulled forward and called 911.

The employee told officers that when the masked man appeared at the window and pointed the gun, she fled out the back door, fearing for her life, Murphy said.

Surveillance video showed the man, who was later identified as Rosso, reaching through the window and removing $305 in cash from the till.

Investigators began to notice some inconsistencies in what they were told by the witness and what they saw on surveillance footage of the crime, Murphy said, such as she looked directly at Rosso and seemed neither alarmed nor surprised. The suspect also was seen running away in the opposite direction from which the witness reportedly directed police.

The witness also told police she went to another fast food restaurant alone right after the robbery, Murphy said, while surveillance footage from that restaurant showed another adult passenger in the front seat with her.

Police re-interviewed the witness on Wednesday, Murphy said, and the witness identified Rosso as the man who robbed the Cruisin Coffee and admitted to driving him to the scene. Because she cooperated, Murphy said no action was planned against the witness.

Rosso was arrested in front of the police department, and after obtaining search warrants, Murphy said police found the clothing Rosso wore and the sawed-off shotgun he used during the robbery. The gun was not only cut illegally short, Murphy said, but also was listed as stolen in a Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office case.

David Rasbach joined The Bellingham Herald in 2005 and now covers breaking news. He has been an editor and writer in several western states since 1994.
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