Armed robbery suspect had baby daughter in car, St Pete police say

ST. PETERSBURG, FL (WFLA) – An armed robbery suspect had his baby daughter in the car with him when he was taken into custody a few blocks from the robbery scene, according to St. Petersburg Police.

Amita Shirma was working by herself at the Quick-Thru mini mart on 4th Street when a masked, armed robber put a gun in her face and demanded cash.

Image courtesy SPPD via Twitter
Image courtesy SPPD via Twitter

“This one guy come in, he show me gun and he tried to get all our money,” said Shirma.

The robber was wearing a mask and struggled with Shirma.

“He just grabbed my hand and I’m just trying to get him to go away, but he said don’t scream, keep quiet,” Shirma said.

St. Petersburg Police arrived moments after the robbery and put out a description of the suspect’s car.
An officer just a few blocks away spotted a car matching the description and was able to stop it.

Inside, officers made a disturbing discovery.

“Within minutes another officer saw the vehicle matching that description, was able to pull him over,” said Yolanda Fernandez with the St. Petersburg Police Department. “We have a suspect now, there is a mask and a weapon inside the car and also an 18-month-old girl.”

Police arrested Edward Melendez, 30, of St. Petersburg. His wife came to the police department to pick up their baby. Police believe she had no idea what her husband was involved in. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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