Craigslist Robbery Arrest, Other El Cerrito Robberies

A Craigslist robbery occurred Monday, and a San Pablo Avenue business was held up by two armed men, El Cerrito police said Monday in providing details about four recent robberies in the city.

A Craigslist robbery occurred in El Cerrito on March 27, El Cerrito police said Monday.

It was one of two recent armed robberies in the city. The other occurred March 20 when two armed men entered a business in the 5900 block of Cutting Boulevard, pushed employees around and fled with cash, according to police Detective Corp. Gilbert Tang.

Wrong information on crimereports.com

The two are among four El Cerrito robberies in the 11-day period March 20-30 that were though Tang said Monday that two of the crimes were strong-arm robberies not involving a weapon. He said the information on crimereports.com, the official outlet for crime information from the El Cerrito police department, was incorrect. (A copy of the crimereports.com list showing four "armed robberies" is attached to this article.)

Craigslist armed robbery

In the March 27 Craigslist robbery, the victim had advertised a sander for sale on Craigslist, Tang said. As the seller sat with two purported buyers in his vehicle in the 11500 block of San Pablo Avenue about 5:35 p.m, one of the pretend buyers brandished a firearm and took the victim's sander and cash, Tang said.

A police investigation identified the alleged gunman, who was arrested a couple of days later and booked for investigation of armed robbery, Tang said. The other suspect, described as a Hispanic male about 5 feet, 7 inches tall and about 115 pounds, is still at large, Tang said. [Update: police forwarded the case of the arrested suspect to the District Attorney's office, but the District Attorney's office did not file charges.]

Two Craigslist robberies were both by robbers who posted ads for a used Honda for sale.

Business armed robbery

The March 20 armed robbery of a business on Cutting occurred about 7:05 p.m. when two men armed with firearms entered the establishment, pushed employees and demanded cash, Tang said. They fled with an undisclosed sum on foot northbound through the parking lot, Tang said. None of the employees was injured.

One suspect was described as black, about 6 feet, 4 inches tall, about 200 pounds and wearing a black jacket with black and red pants, Tang said. The other was black, about 5 feet, 9 inches tall, about 170 pounds and wearing a black jacket.

Strong-arm robbery at El Cerrito High

A strong-arm robbery occurred about 4:20 p.m. on March 29 in front of El Cerrito High School, Tang said. The victim, a juvenile, reported that a 17-year-old girl attempted to pull a purse off the victim's shoulder and the victim pulled it back. The suspect then punched the victim in the face and fled with the purse, Tang said. The suspect was described as black, about 5 feet, 4 inches tall, about 120 pounds and wearing a white sweatshirt with red letters on it, Tang said.

Strong-arm robbery on San Pablo Avenue

A woman reported that she was pushed into bushes by two men and robbed of her purse and shoulder bag containing a laptop computer about 12:05 a.m. on March 30 as she walked north on San Pablo Avenue at Jefferson Avenue, Tang said.

The victim did not report the incident until several hours later after noon, Tang said. The suspects were both described as black, about 6 feet tall, of medium build and wearing dark sweaters and blue jeans.

Patch also asked about two other crimes reported on crimereports.com: a child injured in a "family offense" on April 3 and weapons offense in the 1600 block of Arlington Boulevard on April 2. The former case involved a child who complained a hand being scratched by a caretaker, and the latter involved a houseguest who was found by police with unlawful firearm after being reported by a resident of the home, Tang said.

Anyone with information about these or other crimes, or anyone who witnesses suspicious activity, is asked to contact El Cerrito police at 510-215-4400 during normal business hours and 510-237-3233 nights and weekends.

Marguerite Meade April 10, 2012 at 03:15 PM
Is there a reason that the name of the business is not given when a crime is reported on the premises?
espinaca verde April 10, 2012 at 08:08 PM
how dare you identify them as "black". They are persons of color!
Eric Bordax April 11, 2012 at 04:33 AM
Well, that's a wrap! The dumbest comment possible has finally been posted. Nicely done everyone. The Patch is over, let's all go home.
Charles Burress April 11, 2012 at 04:48 AM
I asked the same question, and Officer Tang told me that the victims may be less likely to cooperate with police if their business is identified and becomes the subject with publicity with its photo in the press.
Jason S April 12, 2012 at 02:12 AM
"Persons of color"? Everyone has and is a shade of some color. While describing ethnicity or color can become a factor in promoting prejudice, it has its place. Using skin color to help describe a person is like using their height to do the same. It makes things easier. While it is important to use proper terminology specific descriptons are important. If a perp looks like a black person, that's the way they should be described.


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