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Photo courtesy of Metro Creative Graphics

A Carolina Forest gas station was allegedly robbed by a female suspect early Monday morning, according to an Horry County police report.

Police responded around 5:15 a.m. to Circle K located at 4999 Carolina Forest Boulevard in reference to an armed robbery.

An employee of the gas station told authorities a white female entered the store and walked around for several minutes as if she was looking at different items, the report said.

The employee said the suspect looked like she was going to walk toward the counter but a male customer entered the store and the suspect continued to walk around.

When the customer paid for his items and left the store, the suspect reportedly walked up to the counter and placed a bag of Skittles on it.

The employee said when she took the candy and told the suspect her total, the suspect "'shuffled around' with her pants as if she was looking for money," the report said.

The employee told police the suspect placed what looked like a handgun on the counter, as well as a bag, before telling the employee to show her her hands.

The employee said the gun looked similar to a flare gun with a "snub-nose type barrel" and stated the suspect held the gun in her right hand while covering it with her jacket using her left hand, the report said.

The employee said she did what the suspect asked as she opened the cash register, placing the cash from it into the bag on the counter.

When the employee finished placing the cash into the bag, the suspect immediately left the store, the report said.

The suspect was described as a thin white female in her 20s standing approximately 5-feet-6 inches with brown hair. She was said to be wearing sweatpants, sunglasses and a "puffy hooded jacket that seemed to be too big for her," the report said.

Another employee walked into the store while the incident was happening but didn't realize what was going on until after the suspect left and the employee told her what had occurred, according to the report.

Video surveillance footage of the incident showed the suspect entering the store around 5 a.m. from the direction of the intersection of Carolina Forest Boulevard and River Oaks Drive, police said.

"Immediately prior to the employee walking into camera view, a vehicle appeared to pull into the parking lot in the same area from which she walked into view from, although no vehicle description could be seen on video," the report said. "As the suspect entered the store, she appeared to attempt to hide her face from full view of the surveillance cameras as she was wearing sunglasses, had the hood of her jacket up and kept turning her face at odd angles."

The suspect walked around the store for several minutes, including when the male customer mentioned by the employee came into the store, and went up to the front counter.

The surveillance footage played out how the employee described, the report said, with the suspect putting a bag of Skittles on the counter before reaching down and "rifling" in her pants and pulling out a bag to place on the counter.

The reporting officer was unable to see the firearm the suspect was said to be holding, the report said. The suspect was using the bag and her jacket to cover something she appeared to be holding in her right hand, police said.

After the employee gave the suspect the cash from the register, the suspect left the store and walked back in the direction from which she entered the store.

Police were able to obtain a photo of the suspect on video surveillance footage from Circle K located at 4301 River Oaks Drive, which is less than a mile from where the incident occurred, according to the report.

It appeared the suspect had visited the Circle K on River Oaks Drive shortly before the incident happened, the report said.

Officers were unable to locate the suspect in the area.

The HCPD is investigating.

No information on a suspect was available at the time of this report, according to information provided by an Horry County Police spokesperson.

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