CHEEKTOWAGA — Law enforcement officials think a pair of robbery suspects arrested in Cheektowaga may be the same men who pulled off a string of robberies recently in Niagara County.
Timothy Reinard, 45, of Harvey Avenue, Lockport, and Anderson Arroyo, 29, of Amherst, are in Cheektowaga Police Department custody and are charged with first-degree robbery, criminal use of a firearm, criminal possession of stolen property, and criminal possession of a weapon, after a Thursday morning robbery at a NOCO station on Transit Road.
The suspects were wearing hoods and bandanas and displayed a handgun while demanding the gas station clerk get down on the floor. They then fled.
It's a similar scenario that has played out over a dozen times since a Middleport 7-Eleven was robbed Dec. 24.
The robbery on Thursday ended much differently, though. Shortly after it was called in to police, Cheektowaga officers stopped a vehicle that ran a red light at the Losson Road and Towers Boulevard intersection. Clothes inside the vehicle matched the description given by a witness at the NOCO station.
Niagara County Sheriff Jim Voutour said as of Thursday the primary focus was on the two or three Cheektowaga cases that exist, but he's confident that Reinard and Arroyo are the pair he and other Niagara County law enforcement agencies have been looking for.
"We like these guys for ours, too," the sheriff said. "It seems like there's a strong case that they're involved in all off them."
Voutour backed off the "all of them" comment when asked about potential copycat robberies that may have occurred, however.
"After we got hit three or four times in a row, we said, 'man, we gotta look out for copycats, now.'" he said. "I think we probably have a couple outliers out there, but we're not sure until we get our crack at these guys."