As the head of the Austin Heights Business Improvement Association, it's not uncommon for Erin Davidson to be in constant contact with members.
But a recent rash of brazen robberies in the business district has the executive director spending extra time pounding the pavement to get the word out.
Armed with a stack of RCMP press releases, Davidson was traversing the Austin Heights area Monday warning business owners and employees to keep an eye out for the suspected robber.
"It's a close-knit community, so word gets shared very quickly," she told The NOW.
"We're hoping the net is closing in on whoever is targeting our area."
In the last three weeks, a thief has robbed nine businesses in the neighbourhood, including two more last week. The suspect usually targets small businesses with one or two employees inside at the time.
He's looking for quick cash and an even quicker getaway.
And in some cases, he may have been armed with a gun.
Coquitlam Mounties believe the same person is responsible for all the robberies and have made catching the robber a major priority.
Davidson said the BIA is working with the police to try and catch the crook, noting the area may not be crime free, but it generally has a safe record.
"This recent rash of crime is very disconcerting, given that we've taken some good measures to keep it as crime-free as possible," she said.
Rosemarie Bella has run her gift store, Rosemarie's Treasures, in the same location on Ridgeway Avenue for 28 years.
She said she's never encountered anything like the recent robbery spree in all her years in the neighbourhood.
"I want the guy caught," she said.
While Bella is angry at the recent events, she said she isn't scared for her safety.
"I refuse to be held hostage," she said.
However, Bella is surprised the suspect is still on the loose given the amount of attention the spree has received from both police and businesses. The storeowner was also well aware the robber was out there before a visit by Davidson, which the BIA sees as a good sign.
Davidson suggested it was crucial the businesses not only look after themselves, but each other too.
John Yi owns and operates Fabric Care Cleaners, also located on Ridgeway.
The robber hasn't targeted his business, but word of the incident has him worried - not so much for his own safety - but for that of others in the neighbourhood.
But it hasn't stopped Yi from carrying on with his work.
"There's only so much you can do," he said.
And Yi, like Bella, is surprised by the robberies, noting after running his business in the area for 16 years, the incidents are "unusual."
Throughout her visits, Davidson is imploring all the businesses and employees to call the police if they see someone matching the suspect's description.
She's also making specific mention of the robber's MO, which is to target small businesses with just one or two employees and cash register on hand.
The thief has robbed a coffee shop, retail store and pharmacy, to name a few, and has been spotted wearing a hoodie, balaclava and gloves.
In some cases, the hoodie might be white or grey, but police suggest the suspect's attire should stick out given the weather.
Investigators have also changed the man's description slightly based on information provided through the mounting number of robberies.
The suspect is described as being about 20 years of age, standing six-feet tall with an athletic built.
He may also have brown eyes.
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