Rome: Armed Moped Rider Commits Six Robberies in 25 Minutes

eople walking by posters of Iranian Sakineh Mohammadi-Ashtiani which read "save Sakineh" are reflected in the mirror of a Vespa scooter parked on a street in central Rome on September 9, 2010. The 43-year-old woman was condemned to death by stoning in 2006 for adultery and complicity in her husband's …
TIZIANA FABI/AFP/Getty

ROME — A speedy thief seemed to be trying to beat his own record of six robberies in a half hour, cutting his time this week by 5 minutes.

The armed robber’s modus operandi is to dash about town on a moped, spending as little time as possible to relieve shopkeepers of their money.

The anonymous criminal first made headlines on August 26, when just prior to the lunch hour he managed to steal more than 3,000 euros in a half hour by holding up staff in supermarkets, pharmacies, and tobacconists, only to disappear before the police could arrive.

According to local media, the man wears a motorcycle helmet, blue jeans, and a black shirt and speaks with a Roman accent. All his heists take place in tight geographic areas in a very short space of time.

In this week’s stealing spree, the man first stole the moped he would use for his crimes at pistolpoint, and then made off with some 2,000 euros from his six robberies, including a bakery, two pharmacies, a market, and a supermarket.

So far, state police have arrived too late to apprehend the thief and are now reportedly studying surveillance footage in the hopes of identifying him.

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