Gas station robber turns out to be store owners neighbor

TOPEKA (KSNT) — “The two arrested, my wife calls him Sueka, he’s our neighbor!” said Ashfaq Mohammad, owner of Cali Gas and smoke shop.

You heard him right… Pops — as Ashfaq, also he’s called in the neighborhood – knew the thief who got away with $14,000 about 3 A.M. Thursday morning.

If that’s not strange enough…

“He came today and apologized to my wife.”

When a burglary occurs store owners are to contact the security department at Kansas Lottery where they will then flag those tickets and they will immediately know it someone tries to claim them.

“When we send tickets out to our stores each ticket is in a special pack, a numbered pack and has a special number,” said Sally Lunsford, Director of Public Affairs at Kansas Lottery. “We know exactly what number all the tickets are in each store.”

It happens more often than you think – 4 to 5 times a year said Lunsford.

Stolen tickets can be redeemed by the thief – assuming they’re not caught first – but it’s unlikely.

“If a ticket is a large winning ticket lets say a $10,000 or even a $1,000 ticket, those tickets anything over $599 has to be claimed at the lottery headquarter.”

Back at “Pops” Ashfaq says he loves his neighbors and the apology helps. He just wants some of them to do better.

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