PALO ALTO (CBS SF) – Police in Palo Alto on Wednesday confirmed a recent attempted robbery in a store over the weekend by a large group of suspects who were thwarted by officers, leading to the arrest of two people.
According to a press release issued by the Palo Alto Police Department, a large group of approx. 30-40 suspects Sunday night around noon. 23:18 in about 20 cars trying to break into the RealReal clothing store at 379 University Avenue in downtown Palo Alto when it was closed.
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A quick call from a private security guard who reported the incident brought a quick response from several police units who were able to stop the burglary. The security guard said the suspects tried to break down the store’s front door with unknown items. The glass entrance door to the store was smashed and held tight. The security guard could only describe the burglary suspects he saw as black men and women wearing face masks. After police arrived, the cars fled the scene.
An officer stopped one of the vehicles – a green 2017 Ford Escape sports car with the headlights off and no license plates – on Willow Road on Chester Street in Menlo Park. The two residents were detained without incident.
Inside the vehicle, police found stolen property worth at least $ 15,000 from another location of RealReal. The property was still on clothes hangers and had price tags and safety sensors still attached. Officers also found a hammer.
Further investigations revealed that the stolen item in the car had been taken during a similar burglary at The RealReal store in Larkspur earlier in the night.
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The investigation revealed that the two suspects had come to Palo Alto with the larger group. The group intended to commit a burglary and steal goods from the store. The two suspects were with the group when they unsuccessfully tried to break down the glass door and fled from the police responded. Police said no video surveillance of the burglary attempt was available for release.
The police work in close cooperation with detectives from the Central Marine Police on the two cases. The burglary at the Larkspur RealReal location is still under investigation. Police are also continuing the Palo Alto investigation to identify the other suspects and to determine what further links may exist between these suspects and those involved in other recent similar crimes in the Bay Area.
The two suspects, identified as 20-year-old Richmond resident Keyonni Marie Jones and 21-year-old Vallejo resident Imani Kevyonna Barnes were arrested in the Santa Clara County Main Jail for attempted commercial burglary and conspiracy, both crimes.
With the outbreak of recent similar crimes throughout the Bay Area, including previous incidents of organized retail theft by open businesses that took place in Palo Alto, officers have stepped up patrols in retail areas in the Palo Alto. Anyone witnessing suspicious behavior in and around Palo Alto retailers is encouraged to call the Palo Alto Police Department’s 24-hour dispatch center at (650) 329-2413 or 9-1-1 if there is an emergency.
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Anyone with information about this incident should call the PAPD’s 24-Hour Shipping Center at (650) 329-2413. Anonymous tips can be sent via email to firstname.lastname@example.org or sent via text message or voicemail to (650) 383-8984.
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