By Mary O’KEEFE
The CVS Pharmacy in Montrose was evacuated Saturday morning, Dec. 18, while Glendale police conducted a search for a man suspected of an attempted car jacking that occurred earlier.
About 8:30 a.m. Glendale police received a call of a suspicious man that went into the CVS store to use the restroom.
An employee of the store said the man, later identified as a 17-year-old boy from Arleta, ran into the store and was “very muddy.”
“When we heard the [boy] was all muddy we thought he might be one of the [car jacking] suspects we were chasing in the rain,” said Sgt. Vahak Mardikian.
This was the second of three suspects arrested for allegedly attempting to car jack two separate drivers early Saturday morning. One attempt was made in Glendale, the other in La Crescenta.
About 1:30 a.m. a driver flagged down one of the deputies and reported that someone had attempted to car jack his vehicle.
“The [witness] said that he stopped at a light at Foothill and La Cañada boulevards when three male Hispanics approached his vehicle on foot. One pointed a handgun at him and told him
to get out of his car. He refused and drove off,” said Sgt. Ray
Harley, Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department, Crescenta Valley Station.
The driver found the deputies at Foothill Boulevard and Angeles Crest Highway where they were investigating a vehicle fire.
“That car was stolen,” Harley said.
Investigators assume the stolen vehicle was driven by the three suspects who apparently needed another vehicle after their car caught fire.
After failing to car jack the first vehicle, the three allegedly attempted again with another driver who was stopped on the off ramp of the Glendale (2) freeway off ramp. The driver was waiting at a red light at Verdugo Road when three men, matching the description of the first attempt, approached the vehicle. They displayed what appeared to be a handgun, according to a Glendale police report.
Like the first driver, the second fled the scene and contacted Glendale police officers. They contacted the sheriffs and were advised of the similar incident that had occurred earlier in the area.
Glendale officers located three males matching the description in the CVS Pharmacy parking lot. Two of the suspects fled. One suspect, a 23-year-old man, was taken into custody. Police continued to search for the other two suspects but were unsuccessful until an alert employee at CVS noticed a man who entered the store and became suspicious.
“We had good reason to believe that the two outstanding suspects were still in the area,” Mardikian said.
When police arrived at the pharmacy on Saturday morning they evacuated the store and began to search for the suspect, finding him in the restroom. They took him into custody.
“We have some evidence that this individual was likely involved in the car jacking.”
Customers were able to go back into the store about 10 a.m.
Police are still looking for the third suspect.