Suspect attempts robbery by axe

POSTED: 4:46 PM Dec 24 2013   UPDATED: 5:44 PM Nov 19 2013
ax robbery
WASHINGTON COUNTY, Va. -

When you hear of a violent gas station robbery, it usually involves a gun.

The attempted robbery that happened at a Washington County, Virginia Scotchman on Sunday was much different. "He came in here with a big axe," the clerk told a 911 operator in a recording the sheriff's department shared with us. "He told me to open the drawer, [then] he just ran out the door."

As the clerk at the Scotchman convenience store on Lee Highway stayed on the phone with dispatchers, deputies rushed to the scene to begin investigating an attempted robbery where the suspect opted for quite an unusual weapon. "In my 30-plus years of law enforcement, I've never really encountered a situation where an individual has used an axe. They'll usually use a smaller weapon like a gun or knife," said Sheriff Fred Newman, with the Washington County, Virginia Sheriff's Office.

Investigators tell us the clerk refused and the robber left the store. 

On his way out of the parking lot, deputies say he used his axe to bash the windshield and passenger-side window of the clerk's car. 

The clerk described the suspect as a man wearing a camouflage jacket and black ski mask.

The suspect fled the scene on foot. The clerk was not hurt.

The Washington County, Virginia Sheriff's Office confirms they have a person of interest in the case and are continuing to investigate.