Federal Way police arrested three teenagers early today on suspicion of robbing a convenience store after customers noticed something amiss inside.
Investigators suspect the 17-year-old boys also might be responsible for similar robberies in Federal Way in recent weeks.
Federal Way police officers were called to the store at 33520 21st Ave. S.W. just before 3:30 a.m. today.
Customers reported that the door was open and the inside of the store was in disarray. They couldn’t find the clerk and asked officers to conduct a welfare check, police reported.
Another witness told police that the clerk had said the business was closed. The witness reported seeing a man standing in the office of the store, police reported.
A police officer contacted the clerk. The clerk said the business was closed for cleaning but made “physical indications” that someone was in the office around the corner, police reported.
The clerk moved behind two officers and escaped. The officers walked into the office and found the three teens hiding in a back corner, police said. Officers arrested the three without incident.
“The Federal Way Police Department would like to recognize the citizen witnesses that observed suspicious circumstances and called 911,” a press release stated. “Their willingness to get involved allowed police to respond and take these dangerous suspects off the streets of Federal Way.”