Four ‘flash rob’ thieves who ransacked California Macy’s store are arrested after hiding in a DENTIST’S SURGERY and trying to flee in a rideshare during wild police pursuit
Four “flash robbery” suspects are charged with ambushing cops led by a California Macy’s during a wild chase, hiding in a dentist’s office, before unsuccessfully attempting to flee in a ride-hailing vehicle, arresting the unsuspecting driver.
Three of the four suspects were seen running away from Macy’s in Brea Mall around noon on Tuesday before taking police on a high-speed chase that forced a nearby elementary school to close.
The trio fled the mall in a getaway car that was followed by police and drove recklessly until they came to a stop near Laurel Elementary School, which they did not enter.
Instead, they ran across the street to Brooks Larson DDS dental office, where a female assailant allegedly faked a heart attack – prompting an emergency response from stunned dentist Dr Brooks Larson and his team, who had lunched together moments before .
But she quickly stopped her act when a car pulled up and the gang ran to get in. Officers then moved in to arrest the three at gunpoint – along with their unsuspecting driver – while the fourth suspect was roped into the mall.
The suspects were identified as Louie Velasco, Jocelyn Mendoza, Sherry Rogers and Marlon Deleon.
The latest incident shows three of the four suspects in the video running away with stolen merchandise in their hands
The suspected thieves began their “flash rob” journey at Brea Mall, proceeded to Laurel Elementary School, Brooks Larson DDS, and then attempted to join a rideshare.
It is the latest in a worrying trend of so-called “flash rob” robberies at major chain stores in Democratic-led California, in which groups of people steal merchandise and evade overwhelmed security personnel.
When a KTLA reporter asked the dentist if he thought it was a “ploy” to evade the police, Larson said, “110 percent, absolutely. It was very fast, it was a good trick’
Dr. Larson spoke to KTL about the suspects’ dramatic arrival in his waiting room on Tuesday, as he and his staff rushed to rescue the woman they believed had a medical emergency.
“This woman pretended to have a heart attack. I responded going over my emergency protocols and we were treating a heart attack victim, we thought.”
When KTLA asked if he thought it was a “ploy” to evade the police, Larson said, “110 percent, absolutely. It went very quickly, it was a good move.’
The story began when a citizen reported a suspicious person in the mall parking lot and police arrested a male suspect, Brea Police Department public information officer Lieutenant Harvey said.
Shortly afterward, police received a second call back to the mall reporting a theft at Macy’s before the chase began. The trio was able to dump the car near Laurel Elementary after police said they were driving so recklessly that they had to give up pursuit.
Brea police had also received a call of an armed robbery at a local Wells Fargo earlier that day. No victim was found.
Authorities now believe the call was a hoax in an attempt to distract agents from the mall.
The innocent driver who was arrested at gunpoint along with the three suspects was quickly released by the police.
Lieutenant Chris Harvey said, “It’s not uncommon for us to have that, and for drivers to experience that. Of course it’s never a pleasant experience when the police hold you at gunpoint and think you’re the suspect when you’re not.’
Suspect Marlon Deleon has filed multiple charges including theft, conspiracy, providing false identity, evading a police officer, being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition, possession of drugs while armed and multiple warrants .
Louie Velasco was charged with identity theft, ticket fraud, possession of drug paraphernalia and providing false identity information.
Jocelyn Mendoza was charged with theft, conspiracy, proving false identification and falsely reporting an emergency.
Sherry Rogers was charged with robbery and conspiracy.
Flash robberies in California have made the news several times in recent weeks, with major chains like Home Depot and Nordstrom Rack to high-end stores like YSL falling victim to gangs of criminals.
Lieutenant Harvey said it is not uncommon for taxi drivers to become involved in crimes, but once they are acquitted, they are released.
After dumping their car at the school, the suspects crossed the street to the Brooks Larson DDS dentist’s office
A Home Depot in California was attacked by a gang of thieves who stole $5,000 worth of merchandise
Suspects in a ‘flash robbery’ at a Nordstrom Rack in California ran to the accessories department and piled their arms with handbags
On August 8, the YSL store in Glendale Americana in Brand was ransacked by 30 people who made off with $400,000 worth of products. Ivan Isaac Ramirez, 23, was detained by police on August 17.
Nordstrom Rack in Riverside was targeted twice by groups of thieves: on July 10 and again on August 14 when it was ransacked by a gang of six thieves who made off with thousands of dollars worth of designer handbags.
On August 27, Home Depot in Signal Hill was stormed by a group of masked thieves who took away $5,000 worth of power tools in full view of shocked staff and customers.
The horrifying scenes are set amid rampant crime in the lawless Democratic state, which has seen an exodus of citizens to Republican strongholds, offices abandoned and countless businesses closed as opioid-addicted hobos fill the sidewalks.
Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass has created a multi-agency shoplifting task force in an effort to tackle the crime spree, which has led to 11 arrests so far.
Long Beach and Signal Hill have created their own task force to end the commercial burglaries they believe are part of organized robbery gangs.