SuperAmerica near St. Thomas robbed at gunpoint

Police are still searching for the man responsible for an armed robbery that occurred shortly before 3 a.m., Jan. 20, at the SuperAmerica on the corner of Grand and Cleveland avenues.

Senior Patrick Rothstein, a former St. Thomas student now studying at the University of Minnesota, was confused after his taxi was pulled over by police shortly after the robbery took place.

“I thought they were going to catch me because I was drinking,” Rothstein said. “(The police officer) talked directly to me in the bucket seat, not to the driver at all. He was talking to me and asking me questions about the robbery….and said he expected the robber to have taken a taxi after running out of SuperAmerica.”

The suspect, said to be wearing an “elderly man” Halloween mask and brandishing a black, semi-automatic handgun, fled north on foot.

After gathering information about the robbery, Public Safety used the “CityWatch” emergency notification system to send text and email messages to students, staff and faculty. The message explained that police were searching the area and advised members of the community to “remain in your location until all-clear.”

“(The text) was a bit startling to read when I woke up this morning and looked at my phone, but I would rather find out directly versus hearing about it through the gossip train,” senior Alyssa Berg said. “I think it is very important that they keep everyone informed when these kinds of things occur. Obviously it is not something I would want to hear, but if it is going to happen, I want to know so that I can be safe.”

An “all-clear” message was sent shortly after 4 a.m.

The St. Paul Police Department described the suspect as a white male in his early 20’s, approximately 6’ 1” – 6’ 2” tall, wearing a light gray or white sweatshirt with a distinct logo on the left shoulder.

If you have any information, please call the SPPD at 651-291-1111.

Ryan Shaver can be reached at