Philadelphia police ID man wanted in robbery spree

Hakim Benson
Hakim Benson
Posted: October 06, 2012

Police are hunting for a 20-year-old man they say is responsible for a string of daytime store stickups across Southwest and West Philadelphia over the last month.

Armed with a black revolver, Hakim Benson, who is known to frequent the area of 6600 Guyer Avenue in Southwest Philadelphia, has robbed nine grocery stores, pharmacies and pizza shops, since Aug. 30, police said.

So far, no one has been hurt, police said, but in each incident, Benson, who has no prior record, has pointed the revolver to the head of a clerk while demanding money.

Police say Benson's spree began around 10:30 a.m. Aug. 30, when he burst into the Community Mini Market in Wynnefield, pointed his gun, and told the counter worker, "You have 40 seconds to put everything in the bag."

Since then Benson has similarly robbed a series of Southwest grocery stores, a Market Street CVS and a Lancaster Avenue Little Caesars Pizza shop, police said.

The most recent robberies have occurred in West Philadelphia, police said.

Benson's slight build - he's about 5-feet, 5-inches tall and about 125 pounds - concerns police who worry a victim, in the heat of the moment, may decide to try and wrestle the gun away.

His lack of criminal history also is alarming, police said.

"All of a sudden this guy snaps and goes on a gunpoint robbery spree," said Detective Joseph Murray, who is working the case. "We are rolling the dice every day this guy is not caught. His family and friends know we're looking for him. It's in his best interest for him to turn himself in."

Anyone with information should call Southwest Detectives at 215-476-1131.

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