Situational awareness. Police preach it and this case is a prime example of why. It’s the night after Christmas, about 11 p.m. on Dec. 26, 2013. Our victim is wearing headphones as he walks in the dark to work near 48th Street and Baseline.
“The next thing you know, he feels someone grab him from behind,” said Phoenix Police Sgt. Derek Elmore. “As he turns around, he sees a male suspect produce a black handgun and point it at him. The suspect moves him off the main street towards the alley right by the canal. He makes him get on the ground and then demands his money and his wallet.”
The suspect got angry when he realized there wasn’t any money in the wallet so the victim told him to use the debit card and gave him his pin number.
That suspect and an accomplice were later spotted using the debit card at a nearby fast food drive-thru in a very recognizable dark-colored Chevy Monte Carlo with a sun roof. It has an “In Loving Memory” sticker on the back window.
Our next case takes us to Fiesta Mall in Mesa. It’s June 11, 2014 at 1:40 p.m. A man and a woman enter the Sears store through the employee entrance.
“They then go to the electronics section near the back of the store, grab a 50-inch TV and run out the back door where their car was waiting,” said Elmore.
By coming in through a back door and going straight for the TV they wanted, Elmore said it’s obvious they had cased the place first.