Frequent customer allegedly robs liquor store

December 20, 2010 (FORD HEIGHTS, Ill.)

Michael Nelson, 18, of the 1500-block of Senator Lane, has been charged with armed robbery with a firearm. A second man involved in the crime is still at large.

On Friday afternoon, Nelson and his co-conspirator allegedly entered a liquor store in the 900-block of Lincoln Highway in Ford Heights. The two men wore black masks, black hats and hoodies and demanded money, but the store manager recognized the gunman as Nelson because he frequented the store as a customer, a sheriff's office press release said.

When Nelson pointed his gun at the victim, the worker engaged in conversation with him, even calling him by his nickname "Lil Mike," because he thought it was a joke, the release said. Only after Nelson and his accomplice allegedly became aggressive did the store manager realize the situation was serious. The manager then opened the register, Nelson's accomplice took cash and both men fled the store, the release said.

Nelson was also charged with domestic battery and aggravated assault in a public place after threatening his girlfriend with bodily harm, choking her and putting a gun to her head shortly after the robbery, the release said.

Nelson appeared in Markham bond court Sunday. His next court date is January 3.

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