Theatre Robbed

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At around 11:00 a.m., a lone gunman entered the Bonita Lakes Mall Cinema 9, ushered the assistant manager into the manager's office,
and took the cash from the safe.

He then locked both men in the office and fled.

Meridian police say the robbery is just the latest in a series of similar robberies that have happened in theatres in Picayune, Hattiesburg, and Laurel.

"We think it's the same guy who's been hitting a different one every week," said Sgt. Randy Jackson of the Meridian Police Department. "I guess this was just our week."

The theatre opened by early afternoon for what was expected to be a busy Valentine's Day weekend.

Mall officials said they believe the robbery was just an isolated incident, and that the mall is a safe place to be.

"We do want people to know the mall is safe," said marketing director Tommy White. "This was a shrewd individual, and we think this was an isolated incident. Once again, we want people to know the mall is a safe place to be."

Meridian police don't have a lot to work with at this point. The victims were not able to give authorities a working description of the suspect, and apparently no one saw him as he left.

Authorities believe if recent history is any indication, he could hit another theatre in another city, sometime in the near future.