A man has been charged in relation to an armed burglary of a convenience store located in Oshawa.
Due to tips from the public, Jeffrey Pedersen, 50, was arrested on Friday, November 18, at his home in Oshawa. Pedersen did not resist arrest.
“He definitely complied with police. He knew the jig was up,” said Sgt. Bill Calder, a media relations officer.
Pederson was charged with robbery and possession of a dangerous weapon. The weapon police said, was a knife which they were not able to recover. Since then, he has been held for a bail hearing.
The reason for Pederson’s arrest dated back to October 23, when a man robbed the Mac’s Milk on Wentworth Street West in Oshawa at around 5:30 a.m. Police say, the man threatened the worker with a knife, and ordered him to hand over cash. The suspect later fled on foot.
During the investigation, Calder said that in order to identify and locate Pederson, photos were released to the public of the suspect, and lead to his arrest.
“The arrest was made shortly after, and we knew who he was and he was known from previous offences, though we don’t like to get into that because it’s now always relevant to the case at hand,” Calder said.
Over the past few years, Mac’s Convenience Stores have become more involved in trying to solve cases relating to robberies of their franchises which includes over 850 stores across Canada.
“It used to be up to law enforcement and Crime Stoppers to come together and figure out the case, though we now have a big part via social media to put images of the suspect on the web to try and help as well, resulting in an 84 percent clearance rate,” said Sean Sportun, the manager of security & loss prevention for Mac’s.
Their tactics seem to work because Sportun said that crime involving Mac’s Convenience Stores is trending downwards over the past few years. The techniques are now being studied by the University of Toronto and Harvard University.
With robberies involving convenience stores still being a common phenomenon, training of employees is also a necessary step to take to ensure dangerous situations are handled properly.
“All employees go through training every three months that is computer-based, then are given a manual each year they must go through,” Sportun said.
According to both Calder and Sportun, robberies are a common occurrence among convenience stores during the overnight hours. Though as Sportun explained, with convenience stores getting more involved in police investigations, and with social media becoming a major part of gaining information on possible police suspects, robberies involving convenience stores specifically, police investigations are becoming easier and the percentage of people caught committing robberies on convenience stores are trending upwards.