Police arrest potato-carrying man in attempted robberies

Providence police said Monday that a man accused of using a potato to look like a weapon in two attempted robberies has been arrested.

Officials said 34-year-old Gary Deming was already being held at the ACI on other charges.

Providence police said Deming admitted during an interview to the two attempted robberies. He said he attached the potato to the end of a butane lighter.

Deming was charged with assault to commit robbery.

Workers at a Shell gas station on Branch Avenue said a potato-wielding man tried to hold them up April 21. They scared him away with a bat.

Police said the same man tried to rob a dry cleaning store on Charles Street about 30 minutes later. The owners gave him a counterfeit $20 bill.

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