Domestic Violence Suspect Arrested After Trying to Rob Restaurant Where Girlfriend Works: Santa Ana Police

A Santa Ana man was arrested the day after he threatened to kill his girlfriend and her 1-year-old son after he tried to rob the restaurant where his girlfriend works at gunpoint, police said Wednesday.

Fernando Becerra, 28, first came to authorities’ attention when officers responded to investigate the domestic violence incident on Monday, Santa Ana police said in a news release.

His 26-year-old girlfriend told investigators she was trying to take her young son to the doctor when Becerra became upset and made threats against their lives while wielding a switchblade. Becerra also had repeatedly threatening to kill her while brandishing a handgun, and had threatened suicide, officials said.

Fernando Becerra, 28, is seen in a booking photo released Feb. 13, 2019, by the Santa Ana Police Department.

Fernando Becerra, 28, is seen in a booking photo released Feb. 13, 2019, by the Santa Ana Police Department.

The girlfriend and baby were placed in a shelter to ensure their safety.

The following morning at 11:30 a.m., officers responded to an armed robbery inside the Mariscos Hector restaurant at 1801 S. Main St.

The perpetrator, who had brandished a handgun, escaped the scene in a white Lexus sedan before police could arrive. But when footage from security cameras was reviewed, an employee recognized the would-be thief as Becerra, her co-worker’s boyfriend who also drives a white Lexus, investigators said.

While officials were still working to gather information, Becerra allegedly called police and claimed his wife and child were abducted.

Officers went to the suspect’s residence in the 2200 block of South Broadway and detained him, and detectives subsequently served a search warrant at the home.

Authorities recovered a loaded handgun, a BB gun and clothing worn by the would-be robber, police said.

Becerra was subsequently booked on suspicion of domestic violence and criminal threats, and robbery detectives have submitted their case to Orange County prosecutors.

The suspect was being held on $1.05 million bail and scheduled to appear in court Thursday, Feb. 14, inmate records show.

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