Photo by Alexander Nguyen
Photo by Alexander Nguyen

A 38-year-old man suspected in a series 15 of armed robberies in Los Angeles and Orange counties was behind bars Friday following his arrest in Hawaiian Gardens.

The suspect, whose name was not released because of the ongoing investigation, initially was spotted about 8 a.m. Tuesday at a liquor store near Stage Road and Alondra boulevard in La Mirada, following an armed robbery in nearby Buena Park, Lt. Martin Rodriguez of the Los Angeles County Sheriff‘s Major Crime Bureau said.

After learning of Tuesday’s robbery, detectives canvassed the area in an attempt to locate the suspect and his black newer-model Nissan Versa that was caught on surveillance video during previous armed robberies, Rodriguez said.

They soon located both.

“Due to the striking similarities of the suspect and his vehicle to that of the armed robbery suspect being investigated by detectives, the suspect was followed to the city of Hawaiian Gardens,” where the suspect and a female passenger were stopped in a residential area, Rodriguez said.

Detectives then determined there was reasonable cause to believe the suspect was responsible for some, if not all, of the armed robberies being investigated, Rodriguez said.

Although the suspect is a permanent resident of Hawaiian Gardens, he was staying in La Mirada in the area where he was first spotted, according to Rodriguez.

“After the suspect’s arrest on suspicion of armed robbery, a search warrant was secured for a location in the city of La Mirada,” he said.

Investigators recovered a .40-caliber semi-automatic handgun matching the appearance of one used in previous robberies along with additional evidence linking the suspect to the some of the crimes, Rodriguez said.

“During further investigation, the suspect was also identified by multiple victims of the armed robberies being investigated,” Rodriguez said.

The suspect was jailed in lieu of $110,000 bail and was awaiting a court appearance, according to the lieutenant.

At least seven of the armed robberies were committed in areas patrolled by the sheriff’s department, he said.

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