It was not his first time stepping foot on the premises. Robert Petty was actually a frequent customer in the Tower Grove South store.
But on June 27, 2014, he came in with far worse intentions than simply picking up a soda.
With a ski mask covering his face and a machine pistol in tow, Petty demanded money. The violent robbery was all caught on camera. The man behind the counter began to comply, opening the cash drawer. As Petty reached over to grab the cash, the clerk grabbed the gun and wrestled with Petty. For several minutes, Petty beat the man with his fists. In the process, the victim managed to move the ski mask, uncovering Petty’s face.
As they reviewed the surveillance video, police discovered that Petty had entered the store just days before as a paying customer.
When they caught up with Petty a short time later, he had changed clothes, but was still wearing a distinctive pair of underwear seen on the surveillance video.
In August, a jury unanimously found Petty guilty of first-degree robbery and armed criminal action.
Assistant Circuit Attorney Sean O’Hagan recommended Petty serve 25 years in prison.
A judge has sentenced him to serve 17 years in the Missouri Department of Corrections.