Bikini baristas robbed at gunpoint, surveillance video leads to arrests

Bikini baristas robbed at gunpoint, surveillance video leads to arrests »Play Video

PORTLAND, Ore. - Police arrested two women in the last month for robbing a Southeast Portland coffee stand at gunpoint.

Acacia Bowers, 29, and Lacey Preston, 30, are in jail for robbery, unlawful use of a weapon and possession of meth.

The coffee stand owner and her employees are relieved police continued to follow leads since it happened last fall.

“It’s traumatizing. You can't have a gun put in your face without walking away from it with some sort of damage,” said Tracy Fields, who owns Twin Perks Espresso. “You don't know what they're going to do, so the (baristas) are extremely relieved (they’re caught).”

Investigators believe one woman, caught on surveillance video, walked up to the ordering window with a gun and demanded money while another drove up in a car later pretending to be a concerned witness. Police have said the second woman offered to call 911, but they never got that call and believe she was actually trying to buy her accomplice time. Surveillance cameras caught the car’s license plate.

The two suspects are currently charged for one robbery, but police also linked them to a robbery at the Smokin’ Hot Java Bombshell Baristas in Gresham the week before. They could face additional charges.

Fields said criminals should know her businesses have sophisticated surveillance systems.

“We’ll get them every time. You just have to put the money in to protect your employees and make people understand this is not ok,” she said. “It’s a bad idea to try and rob us.”

Bowers and Preston pleaded not guilty.