Federal agents arrested a man at his Downey home Thursday on suspicion of carrying out four armed robberies at GameStop video game stores in Los Angeles and Orange County last year, netting $135,000 in cash and merchandise, authorities said.
Frederick Lopez Jr., 27, was taken into custody “without incident” by U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agents, the agency said in a written statement. He faces four federal charges of interference in commerce by robbery.
The armed robberies took place on Aug. 28 in Lynwood; on Sept. 15 in Rowland Heights; on Oct. 24 in West Covina; and on Oct. 26 in Brea, officials said.
“Lopez allegedly entered the stores at night, sometimes accompanied by another suspect, and made small talk with the GameStop store clerks before brandishing a gun and demanding merchandise and money from the cash register,” U.S. Department of Justice spokesman Ciaran McEvoy said in a written statement.
“Lopez and the other suspect allegedly also stole victims’ cell phones and, on two occasions, ordered the victims to help load the stolen merchandise into a silver minivan registered to Lopez,” McEvoy said.
A clue found at the scene of the final robbery led to his capture, authorities said.
“Lopez’s fingerprint was found on a Nintendo Entertainment System recovered from the scene of the Brea robbery, and witnesses and victims later identified Lopez as one of the suspects,” according to McEvoy.
While searching the suspect’s home on Thursday, ATF agents found a gun and other items believed to have been used in the robberies, ATF officials said.
If convicted as charged, Lopez faces up to 80 years in federal prison.
He was scheduled to appear in federal court in Los Angeles for an arraignment hearing in April.