SOUTHINGTON — A local man was arrested on Thursday on charges he held up two gas stations on Meriden-Waterbury Turnpike.
Kyle Witkoski, 36, of 23 Union St.,was charged with first-degree robbery, second-degree robbery, sixth-degree larceny, second-degree breach of peace and use of drug paraphernalia. He is being held on $60,000 bond.
At approximately 12:34 p.m., police received a call alerting them of an attempted armed robbery at a Go Happy Mart at 2110 Meriden-Waterbury Turnpike. Witnesses told officers they observed a man later identified as Witkowski approach the cash register, demand $200, inform patrons he was armed and tell an employee working the register “this is a robbery,” according to police.
The employee then reportedly instructed Witkoski to wait outside as he retrieved money from a back room. Police said they were informed Witkoski complied and employees then locked him out of the store. Witkoski waited outside for several minutes before entering a car waiting for him which then left the premises, according to police.
Several minutes later, officers received a call of a second armed robbery of a Fleet Gas located at 2211 Meriden Waterbury Turnpike. Police said a witness told them Witkoski approached the store clerk, demanded money and claimed he was armed. The clerk then asked to see Witkoski’s gun, but Witkowski refused, according to police. Police said the clerk then offered Witkowski $20 in cash, which he accepted before leaving the building and entering a vehicle waiting for him.
Police later intercepted a Honda on Ruggles Row which matched the description of the vehicle reportedly involved in both robberies and said they learned Witkowski hired a taxi service and told the driver he planned to cash a check at a Go Happy Mart. After exiting the Go Happy Mart, Witkoski reportedly reentered the cab and requested to be driven to a Fleet Gas station, claiming he was unable to cash his check.
Police immediately released the cab driver, who was cleared of any wrongdoing.
Witkoski’s court date was not immediately available.