For the third time in eight days, a bandit wearing a rubber mask of a former U.S. president has struck a restaurant in central Anne Arundel County.
Twice the deed has been done by a well-dressed Richard Nixon, once by a dapper Ronald Reagan.
County police said they believe that one man is posing as Mr. Nixon and Mr. Reagan, but they have little to go on beyond that.
They know he wears a suit or a sports coat and may have a woman accomplice who drives the get-away car. He is partial to Ritchie Highway restaurants. And he packs a blue steel revolver.
"We would like to think these are all done by the same person because they are all presidents," said Officer Terry Crowe, a police spokesman. "We think they are related because of the Richard Nixon mask and because the guy robs the same type of shop."
The crimes also bear a resemblance to the 1992 movie "Point Break," in which a group of beach bums staging robberies covered their faces with the rubber masks of former presidents.
In Tuesday's holdup, a man masquerading as Mr. Nixon burst into the Subway sandwich shop in the Arnold Station Shopping Center about 8:10 p.m. and threatened the owner, Sherri L. Anderson, 28, with a revolver.
The man jumped over the counter and took the cash drawer containing an unknown amount of money, police said. He ran outside and jumped into a car that was driven by someone who witnesses said appeared to be a woman.
Witnesses said the man was white, between 6 feet and 6 feet 2 inches tall and with dark hair. He was wearing a tan tweed sports jacket. The mask prevented witnesses from guessing the bandit's age.
His accomplice is described as white, 18 to 25 years old, with shoulder-length frizzy hair and wearing a white blouse and glasses.
On Sunday, police said, a bandit masquerading as Mr. Reagan held up a Little Caesar's restaurant in the 400 block of Ritchie Highway in Severna Park about 8:30 p.m. Police said the robber pointed his revolver at the clerk and demanded to have a nylon bag stuffed with cash.
He ordered an assistant manager to hang up a telephone and unsuccessfully tried to get another assistant manager to get money from safe.
On his way out, police said, the man threatened a customer with a gun, ordered him to lie face down on the floor and took his wallet.
The first of the three holdups happened Aug. 24 at the Shangri-La restaurant in Severna Park.
In that robbery, police said, a man in a suit and wearing a Nixon mask demanded cash about 6 p.m.