Crooks took advantage of the Halloween season by wearing masks in committing four separate robberies over the weekend and into the holiday, Madison police reported.
In three cases, robbers used "Scream" masks from the movie of the same name, with two of the cases possibly connected, according to police news releases.
On Friday, a suspect wearing a Scream mask entered a convenience store on the southwest side, knocked down an employee and grabbed cash from the register.
On Saturday shortly after noon, a woman wearing a Scream mask created a ruckus at Myle's Nails, 2709 E. Washington Ave., first touching a baby's shoulders before grabbing cash from a purse, police reported.
"Patrons of the nail salon called 911 and employees tried to keep her from fleeing by locking the front door, but the suspect threw a gold-colored Buddha statue through the glass door, smashing it so she could get out," police spokesman Joel DeSpain said in a release.
The woman was accompanied by a man who left the salon when the disturbance first erupted.
The black female suspect was described as 18 to 19 years old, 5 feet 5 inches to 5 feet 8 inches tall, 115 to 135 pounds, wearing black jogging pants and a black hooded sweatshirt besides the mask.
The male suspect was described as black, 20 to 23, 5-6, with hair in short braids, wearing black pants, a black jacket with a red emblem and a baseball or skull cap with red and black lettering on it.
The second robbery was reported at 2:47 p.m. Saturday in the 2200 block of South Park Street, when two masked men allegedly grabbed a woman as she was walking by.
"She resisted the men but she said one stole her wallet which was in an open cloth bag," DeSpain said.
The suspects were described as black males, one wearing a hockey mask and the other a black ski mask.
In the third robbery, a woman wearing a Scream mask tried to hold up the Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant at 2958 E. Washington Ave. at about 2:30 p.m. Monday, but fled empty-handed when the manager escaped into an office.
The suspect was described as a black female, 5-0 to 5-3, 100 to 110 pounds, wearing blue jeans, a black robe and the Scream mask.
Detectives are looking into the last two Scream mask cases to see if there is any link.