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Gas station, Pizza Hut robberies in OC, LA: 2 in custody

January 9, 2013 12:00:00 AM PST
Two suspects are in custody in connection with an armed robbery spree spanning Los Angeles and Orange counties. Businesses in Cerritos, Buena Park and Fullerton were targeted late Tuesday night.

One of the businesses is less than half a mile from a police station - but that didn't deter the suspects. Most of the targeted businesses were gas stations, and the robbers also hit a Pizza Hut on Beach Boulevard and Malvern Avenue.

Cpt. Andy Luong with Buena Park police said so many robberies in such quick successions are rare.

The suspects, who police say were armed with handguns, seemed to be focusing on Chevron gas stations. They targeted one in Cerritos on Carmenita Road and two others in Buena Park located on the corner of Orangethorpe and Beach boulevards and on Valley View Street and La Palma Avenue.

In one of the robberies, the suspects took the whole cash till from the register. They tossed the drawer aside before they left but took off with the cash. At the Pizza Hut, police say the suspects robbed the business as well as a customer who was inside the eatery at the time.

In another robbery also in Orange County, the suspects stole $100 in cash and lottery tickets from an AM PM Arco station on Euclid and Valencia avenues in Fullerton. Investigators initially thought this robbery was not connected to the Chevron and Pizza Hut cases - but later said they believe all of the incidents are connected.

The amount of cash stolen from the other locations was not released. No one was hurt during the incidents.

Investigators say the two suspects wearing dark hooded sweatshirts at the time of the robberies. This made it hard to identify them via surveillance footage.

However, Luong said witnesses provided pertinent information about the suspects' vehicle, which helped investigators track them down. Once officers located and stopped the vehicle, they found a couple of weapons and money - although police did not disclose exactly how much.

Authorities are waiting to release the names and photos of the suspects until all of the witnesses have been interviewed and shown a line-up.

If you have any additional information about these robberies, you're urged to contact Buena Park police at (714) 562-3901.