3 Arrested in String of Thefts That Involved Following Bank Customers, Flattening Their Tires in 6 SoCal Cities: Police

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About $80,000 were recovered when officers arrested a man and two women suspected of stealing cash from bank clients by slashing their tires and taking cash from their vehicles while the victims inspected their tires, the Torrance Police Department said Thursday. Omar Baltazar, 39, Sandra Baltazar-Diaz, 18, and Monica Diaz-Sanchez, 39, all of Hawthorne, were arrested Monday in connection to several thefts in Torrance, Manhattan Beach, Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, Glendale and Pasadena, police said. Prosecutors filed charges for 14 separate grand theft cases Tuesday, all involving victims who had withdrawn large amounts from a bank, were followed to their cars and had their tires slashed, according Torrance Police Sgt. Ronald Harris. Two of those thefts took place in in mid-February in Torrance, Harris said. In Glendale, a woman who had just withdrawn a large amount of cash from the Bank of America in the area of 211 North Glendale Avenue on Monday, noticed one of her tires was flat as she drove away. While she was outside her car inspecting the tire, one of the suspects entered the car and took the cash, the Glendale Police Department said in a Facebook post. Investigators later found surveillance video showing the suspect following the victim to her car and slashing her tire just after she got into the car, according to the post. Glendale Police noted two other similar thefts that involved a flat tire in the city, one on February 6 at the same Bank of America location and another on February 12 at a Wells Fargo at 535 N. Brand Blvd. Police did not provide additional details on the other two thefts. Authorities believe the three suspects are family members, but have not been able to confirm their relationship, Sgt. Harris said. No further information was immediately available. KTLA’s Brian Day contributed to this report.

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