Photo courtesy the West Covina Police Department
Photo courtesy the West Covina Police Department

Police Tuesday said they have arrested a man on suspicion of stabbing a clerk during an attempted robbery at a gas station convenience store in Covina.

La Puente resident Frank Ponce-DeLeon, 54, was arrested about 1:20 p.m. in the 1400 block of West Bridger Street, said Covina police Sgt. Gregg Peterson.

A citizen had viewed a news broadcast of surveillance video, which showed the attack that occurred about 5 p.m. Monday in the 600 block of South Barranca Avenue, and was driving in the Covina area when that person saw a vehicle similar to the suspect’s vehicle, Peterson said.

The citizen followed the vehicle and immediately contacted the Covina Police Department. Responding officers located the suspect vehicle on West Bridger Street and contacted the occupants, he said.

“One of the occupants inside the vehicle resembled the description of the suspect depicted in the stabbing of the store clerk,” Peterson said. “The two other occupants of the vehicle were females, one of whom resembled the description of the female seen exiting the suspect vehicle, just prior to the stabbing and attempted robbery.”

The clerk, whose name was withheld, was treated at a hospital for stab wounds to his left arm.

“The victim and witnesses indicated an unknown male adult entered the business, walked around the counter and immediately began stabbing the male clerk without provocation,” Peterson said.

“After the victim fended off the attack, the suspect immediately left the store without taking any property and entered the driver’s seat of a black 2000 model, Chevrolet SUV — with no plates — that was parked near the front doors of the business,” the sergeant said.

Ponce-DeLeon was subsequently identified and arrested on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon and attempted robbery, he said.

He was being held in lieu of $100,000 bail pending his arraignment at Citrus Superior Court in West Covina on Thursday.

–City News Service

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