Just days before Christmas, Lee County authorities are investigating three armed robberies within 24 hours.
Two convenience stores were robbed, along with a bank. While the crimes don't appear related, police say the holiday season can fuel these types of crimes of opportunity.
Lt. Victor Medico with the Fort Myers Police Department says, "during the holiday season, especially this year, we did see a little bit of an uptick but it's really hit or miss, whether it's the increased consumer traffic, or more funds for the would-be thief to collect, so that's something that may play a role."
Monday morning, police say three armed, masked men robbed the Fifth Third Bank on Cleveland Avenue. Police found the getaway car, but not the suspects. Later that day, a man with a gun stole money from the Sunoco gas station on Palm Beach Boulevard. Just before midnight, deputies say two armed, masked men took cash from the Mobil station on Gladiolus Drive.
Medico says the strong surveillance pictures could help catch these Christmas thieves. "As technology gets greater and greater, the quality of the images, the quickness we can get these images, they are just so valuable to the case," he says.
Detectives have not made any arrests. If you have any information, call Crimestoppers at 1-800-780-TIPS.