String of armed robberies in Southeast L.A. County could be connected: LASD

Local news

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department is investigating a string of armed robberies Monday evening that detectives believe could be connected.

The locations hit were all in strip malls, and were mainly vape or smoke shops or small stores that sell liquor and cigarettes in the Southeast region of L.A. County.

One person was wounded in one of the robberies.

In all of the incidents, three suspects would enter a business, present handguns, take cash or merchandise, then flee on foot, according to the Sheriff’s Department.

The first robbery happened around 6:42 p.m. Monday in the 4800 block of Paramount Boulevard in Lakewood, where the robbers flashed a gun inside the Discount Mart Tobacco Vape & More store, before stealing merchandise.

About three minutes later, another armed robbery was reported nearby in the 5500 block of South Street in Lakewood. Assailants presented a gun and took money and other items from a business.

The location of Dec. 20, 2021 robberies that LASD is investigating as possibly being connected. (KTLA)
The location of Dec. 20, 2021 robberies that LASD is investigating as possibly being connected. (KTLA)

Around 7 p.m., thieves with at least two guns targeted the 10400 block of Artesia Boulevard in Bellflower.

About half an hour later, a robbery was reported at Cora’s Market in the area of Norwalk Boulevard and 161st Street. The assailants were armed with a gun and fired it over the plexi-glass barrier at the cash register.

The bullet grazed the head of a store owner, who was treated at a hospital and is expected to survive.

At 7:40 p.m., another incident was reported at a vape store in the 17500 block of Pioneer Boulevard, where thieves got away with $5,000 in cash and property.

Authorities said all the crimes were similar and involved three male suspects in their late teens or early 20s. They all fled the scene on foot, and weren’t seen getting into any vehicles.

Since all five incidents happened in close proximity to each other and involved suspects with the same descriptions, authorities are investigating them as being possibly related, according to Sheriff’s Department Deputy Tracy Koerner.

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