By Maureen Kyle
(LOUISVILLE) -- Six suspects accused of a string of robberies across the metro are behind bars. Police describe the teens as young and bold. They're accused of shooting at least two people during more than a dozen armed robberies. WAVE 3's Maureen Kyle investigates.
During a six-week spree, metro police say 18 brazen and violent robberies occurred in the metro area.
Now police believe they have at least six of the Louisville teens responsible.
Mathew Mathew considers himself blessed, because he is back behind the counter of his convenience store after being shot three times during a robbery.
Mathew, who has a sign reading: "Jesus is Lord" taped above the counter, was cooperating and the shooting was unprovoked. Miraculously, Mathew's belt buckle saved him from taking a bullet in the stomach.
He also feels blessed because the teen who police say nearly took his life is now behind bars.
"That's very great news," he said. "God is great. God is great, no? God give the help to the police people to catch that guys."
Even though Mathew attributes divine intervention, metro police call it thorough investigation. Working through the night for weeks, investigators made arrests in connection with 18 robberies.
Among those arrested: 18-year-old Jesse Orndorff and 18-year-old Avery Madry. Madry is charged with attempted murder for allegedly shooting Mathew and one other store clerk -- who offered no resistance.
Metro police also arrested four juveniles, handcuffing one as he got on his school bus Thursday morning.
"It's a big relief because we were convinced, had these people continued, that someone would be seriously injured or killed," said Lt. Jim Mueller.
Even with six behind bars, Mueller says more arrests are expected. "This doesn't necessarily mean that robberies are going to stop in Louisville. But certainly the number of violent robberies that we've seen in the past month or so -- we're relieved to get the people who committed those offenses off the street."
Police are still warning clerks to be on high alert, even if protected by a higher power.
"Each and every customer before coming inside, I'm watching who is coming." says Mathew.
Lt. Mueller says he believes the teens rotated two at a time during these arrests, but stopped short of calling this gang activity.
He's asking anyone with any information to call the crime tipline at 574-LMPD (574-LMPD).
Online Reporter: Maureen Kyle