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Police Search For Fort Lauderdale Armed Robber

FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) -- Police are looking for a man they say may be connected to two armed robberies that happened in Fort Lauderdale last month.

On Friday, Fort Lauderdale Police released a sketch of the man they are trying to find. Police say he's in his 20s or 30s, about 5'10'' tall with a thin build and short cropped hair.

The first incident took place on May 22nd just before 10:00 a.m. at the First United Methodist Church located at 101 Southeast 3rd Avenue. That incident was caught on surveillance video.

Watch Maggie Newland's report, click here.

The victim told police an armed man came up to a her as she was going back to her car after dropping her child off at preschool.

"He pointed the knife at her chest. He demanded that she turn over her purse and after she did so he had her get down on the ground. He then had her scoot underneath her vehicle in an attempt to keep her from seeing him as he was leaving," said Det. DeAnna Greenlaw of the Fort Lauderdale Police Department.

Police said she got a good description of the man who then took off in a car which drove east, down southeast 2nd street. Police were able to use the description to create a sketch.

On the morning of May 29th, a similar armed robbery occurred. Police say it happened on the 600 block of Southeast 2nd Street. Another woman was robbed and the assailant also had a large knife.

Police said it sounds like the same man robbed her.

That woman didn't want to be identified, but talked to CBS4's Maggie Newland over the phone. She said she lives in another state, but was in Ft. Lauderdale on a business trip when the robbery occurred. She said she was a few blocks away from the courthouse just after 9 a.m.

"He approached me from behind. He had about a 12 inch knife in his right hand. He put it up to my waist and he just kind of grabbed me by the waist and he showed it to me."

She reached for her wallet, but that wasn't enough.

"He placed the knife to my neck and said, "No, I need everything you have and I will cut your throat open if you don't give me everything that you have,' so I proceeded to give him my entire purse."

She said the robbery happened when there were no witnesses in the area.

"I do believe he may have been watching me from a distance just so he could determine the right moment to approach me," she said.

Police and the victim are asking for the public's help to find the man responsible for the robberies.

"We're confident this individual is gonna see the media coverage. He's going to see his face in the sketch and he knows what he did. He needs to come forward and anyone out in the public who knows who this person is, they also need to come forward and assist us with bringing justice to our victims," said Det. Greenlaw.

The robbery victim added, "Please call the police immediately. Luckily, I got away unharmed but he could definitely be a threat and he could harm someone else."

If you have any information, call Broward County Crimestoppers at (954) 493-TIPS.

Click here to watch Maggie Newland's report. 


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