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News Release

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Media Relations

Dry Cleaner Robbers Caught on Tape

Los Angeles: Detectives are asking the public's help in identifying two robbers who tried to rob a dry cleaners on March 23, 2007. The robbers got away with an armored guard's gun, whose images were captured on videotape.

The robbers surprised two women employees when they arrived at 8AM to open the Laundromax Cleaners, located in the 1500 block of Manchester Avenue, in South Los Angeles. Detectives suspect the robbers used a passkey to gain entry to an office where they lay in wait for the employees.

"The robbers must have been greatly disappointed when they found out the women did not have the keys to the money drawers," said LAPD spokesman Lieutenant Paul Vernon. "The robbers tried every key they could find to open the drawers. It must have been terrifying for the women."

A 52-year-old Loomis armored car guard showed up unexpectedly to fill the change machines. Faced with an armed guard, the robbers decided to cut their losses and gave up on the robbery. They surprised the guard, and took his .380 semi automatic handgun.

The suspects were in the office for about 90 minutes, waiting for the women to arrive. Video surveillance captured their actions.

"We believe that anyone who knows these men will recognize them," Lieutenant Vernon said. "We hope someone will step up and tell us who the robbers are. Thankfully no one was hurt in this incident, but it may be only a matter of time before they up the ante."

The robbers were described as Black men, about 6 feet tall and weighing between 150 and 160 pounds each. One of the robbers appeared to be in his 20s; the other appeared to be around 40.

A reward has been offered by Laundromax and Loomis, Fargo armored car company for information leading to the suspects' arrest and conviction.

Anyone with information is asked to call 77th Area Detective Ben Fernandes at 213-473-4861. On weekends or during off-hours, call the 24-hour toll free number at 1-877-LAWFULL

The surveillance footage and photographs of the suspects are available by request from Media Relations Section.