$4,000 Reward Offered in Grog Shop Robbery

     A $4,000 reward is being offered to anyone with information leading to the arrest and conviction of the man who robbed the Grog Shop in downtown Homer Thursday. Grog Shop owner Mel Strydom says he is adding to a reward already being offered by Kenai Peninsula Crimestoppers.

     Strydom says the number one thing is he is glad that no one was hurt in the armed robbery, which occurred at about 10:45 p.m. Thursday night.

     Homer Police Chief Mark Robl says police are continuing their investigation and do not have any “firm” suspects yet. Robl believes the suspect acted alone. He was caught on the store’s numerous security cameras but his face was concealed.

     Robl says the suspect is a white male between 6' and 6'2" tall, with a stocky build. He was wearing faded blue jeans, gloves and a dark-colored jacket with some sort of logo on the left sleeve, near the wrist.

     Robl says the suspect entered the story brandishing a short-barreled shotgun.

     "We believe it could possibly be a gun known as a "Snake Charmer," which is a .410-caliber shotgun commonly used by people around here to subdue their halibut."

     Robl says police are working to produce a photo of the suspect that could be distributed to the community. He says police are looking for any help from the public with any information on the suspect or the crime.

     The Grog Shop was the scene of another armed robbery about a year ago. In that case, 50-year-old John Allen Mumey was charged with First Degree Robbery. Police believe Mumey may have had a homemade bomb in his possession during that crime.

     Robl notes that there has been an uptick in property crimes in the downtown Homer area over the last few months. He advises all downtown business owners to be extra aware of security. In addition to security cameras and alarm systems, he recommends that business owners keep their windows and doorways well-lit and free of brush and other obstructions. He says police officers are happy to come out and help owners review their security systems and procedures.

     Mel Strydom says he’s glad he took security seriously when he purchased the Grog Shop in 2005. He says the store is outfitted with alarms, 16 security cameras and systems in place to keep a minimum amount of cash on hand.

     Anyone with information about the crime is asked to call the Homer Police Department at 235-3150 or Crinmestoppers at 1-800-478-4258.