March 14, 2008

Louie’s Lunch Truck Robbed at Gunpoint

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A 25-year-old man allegedly robbed Louie’s Lunch food truck at gunpoint around 9:30 p.m. on Wednesday night, according to the Ithaca Police Department and one of the victims.
Shane M. Jacobs, of Hector, N.Y. was arrested and charged with robbery in the second degree, the IPD said yesterday.
Parker Imrie ’07, who works at Louie’s Lunch as a cook several days a week, said he was on the phone with truck owner Ron Beck when his co-worker told him that the truck was being robbed.
Imrie said he then saw the suspect pointing a black handgun into the truck’s window. The suspect, wearing a hooded sweatshirt and sun glasses, demanded all the money in the cash register, he said.
After being handed a few hundred dollars in cash, the suspect fled on foot traveling north on Thurston Avenue, according to Imrie.
Imrie said he followed the suspect on foot and watched him get into a car that pulled up along the side of the road with three other men inside. Imrie then called the police and gave a description of the grey, SUV-type getaway vehicle.
“Ithaca Police Officers located a vehicle fitting the suspect vehicle description several blocks away from where the incident took place, occupied by a white male fitting the description of the suspect,” the police said in a statement.
The IPD said the suspect is being held in city lock-up, awaiting arraignment.
[img_assist|nid=28849|title=On wheels|desc=Students grab a snack at Louie’s Lunch on North Campus.|link=node|align=left|width=|height=0]
Jacobs is a “level two” sex offender in New York State and was convicted in 2001 of raping a 13-year-old girl, according to an entry in the state’s sex offender registry that matches the suspect’s description.
Louie’s Lunch is a popular student dining spot located on the corner of Thurston Avenue and Wait Avenue, across the street from Risley Hall.
Imrie said that while he never expected an incident like this to happen, he has always felt safe and continues to feel safe working at Louie’s Lunch.
“This is an isolated innocent,” he said. “I have no reason to believe this is part of a crime epidemic.”
According to Simeon Moss ’73, director of Cornell Press Relations, the Cornell Police Department provided assistance to the Ithaca Police during the incident but only the IPD is investigating the incident. A university-wide alert was not sent out because the suspect was apprehended quickly, he said.
The IPD said yesterday evening that no further details about the incident or the continuing investigation were available.