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News Release

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Media Relations

Suspect Posing as Utility Worker Arrested

Los Angeles: A vicious take over robbery suspect has been arrested.  On Friday, February 13, 2009, at around 8:30 a.m., two Hispanic suspects wearing orange reflective vests and white construction hats, posing as gas company employees, knocked on the front door of the victim’s residence and told her that they needed to get to the back of the house to read the meter.  A short time later, the suspects again knocked on the door and told the victim that she needed to sign a form.  When the victims opened the door, the suspects pushed their way in and produced handguns.  The suspects tied up the victim and took a large sum of cash.

The same day, a press conference was held at Olympic Area Police Station, along with Councilmember Tom La Bonge, asking for the public’s help in identifying the suspects.

As a result of the press conference, several tips were received.  Olympic Area uniform personnel recognized the description of one of the suspects from a recent traffic stop.  As a direct result one suspect was identified as 28-year-old Hector Rene Maldonado.  Robbery detectives along with surveillance personnel worked throughout the weekend to try and locate the suspects.

On February 14, Maldonado was arrested outside of his Los Angeles residence.  Evidence related to the robbery was recovered.  On February 17, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office filed Robbery, Burglary and an armed allegation against Maldonado.  Maldonado is being held without bail.

The other suspect has not been identified and still being sought. Anyone with information regarding this home invasion robbery or other crimes is encouraged to contact Olympic Robbery Detectives at 213-382-9460.  After hours or on weekends, calls may be directed to a 24-hour, toll-free number at 1-877-LAPD-24-7 (527-3247) or by texting CRIMES (274637) and beginning the message with the letters LAPD.  Tipsters may also submit information on the LAPD website:  www.lapdonline.org.  All tips may remain anonymous.