Police: Convenience store clerk in Bloomington comforted customer before being robbed twice

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BLOOMINGTON, Ind.– Police say a suspect is in custody after he allegedly robbed a convenience store clerk who bought him a drink and gave him a hug while he was crying.

Officers responded to a call of a robbery in progress around 2:15 a.m. Monday at the Our Way C Store, located at 1122 West 11th Street.

The clerk said the suspect, identified as Bennie Ferguson, 42, had been crying and emotionally distraught inside the store. He bought the man a fountain drink, let him charge his phone and gave him a hug. Ferguson then asked the clerk to look the other way so he could take money from the register.

The clerk refused, and Ferguson punched him in the head. He then took money from a register and ran. A short time later, he returned to the store, hit the clerk again and took more money from another register while the clerk was on the phone with 911. The clerk suffered a cut to his face.

Ferguson is a regular at the store, according to the clerk.

Monday night, police arrested Ferguson at an apartment in the 1400 block of North Arlington Park Drive. He faces preliminary charges of robbery, theft and habitual offender.