Heads Up Police Work Leads to Capture of Five Armed Robbery Suspects

November 8, 2001

"Heads Up Police Work Leads to Capture of Five Armed Robbery Suspects"
Los Angeles: On Monday, November 5, 2001 at approximately 7:20 p.m., Officers R. Palacios, 35 years of age, 12 years with the Department, R. Riske, 37 years of age, 11 years with the Department, assigned to Central Division, and C. Fenstemar, 28 years of age, 5 years with the Department, E. Erby, 38 years of age, 7 years with the Department, J. Marshburn, 29 years of age, 3 years with the Department and R. Sandoval, 23 years of age, 2 years with the Department, assigned to Newton Division, responded to a radio call of a Robbery in Progress in the 2100 block of South Main Street. Upon their arrival, the officers were unable to find a victim outside of the location. Officer Palacios found a witness who relayed to him that she had seen several males, wearing ski masks and carrying guns, pushing a man into the business. While Palacios was speaking to the witness, Officer Riske, having noticed the telephone number to the business was on the exterior of the building, used his personal cellular phone to call inside. Riske spoke with an unknown male, later determined to be the victim, inside the location. Riske came to the conclusion, by the victim’s telephonic demeanor and key questions he asked him, that the suspects were still inside the location and help was needed. Armed with this information, the officers formulated a quick plan of action.
As the officers were deploying around the front of the business, one of the victims, Raymond Yosef, walked out the front door. The officers noticed that Yosef had blood all over the front of his shirt. Yosef relayed to the officers that he had been locking up the business when five-unknown male Hispanics, wearing ski masks and carrying handguns and shotguns attacked him. One of the suspects struck Yosef in the face and on the head with the butt of a shotgun and forced him back inside the business. Once inside, the suspects went to the warehouse and began gathering merchandise. They also demanded keys to a truck full of merchandise that was parked inside. Yosef was unsure if the other employees were able to get out of the building.
The officers conducted a quick search of a portion of the business in an attempt to locate the suspects and additional victims. Due to the size of the warehouse and tactical safety concerns, the officers were forced to cut short their search and request a K-9 team. Units from the Los Angeles Police Department’s K-9 unit responded to the scene and with the assistance of the officers, conducted a search of the warehouse.
As result of the search, four of the five suspects were located inside the building as well as the additional victims. Upon locating the fourth suspect, officers learned that there was possibly an additional armed suspect within the location.
Metropolitan Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) officers were then called to conduct a more thorough search of the building. During this search, the fifth suspect, armed and still wearing a ski mask was located and taken into custody.
All the suspects were taken into custody and booked at Newton Station for 209 PC (Kidnap/Robbery). Additionally, 2 guns, ammunition and ski masks were located and booked at Newton Station.
Due to the outstanding professionalism and tenacious attention to duty displayed by the officers five dangerous felons are off the streets of Los Angeles.
Officer R. Palacios is available for interviews by the media. For further information, contact Media Relations Section at 213-485-3586.
This press release was prepared by Police Officer Victoria Diaz, Media Relations Section, 213-485-3586.