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'Safety vest bandit' sought after 12th L.A. County robbery

March 26, 2012 |  7:28 am

Safety vest bandit
Authorities are asking for the public’s help in identifying a man they call the “safety vest bandit,” who allegedly has robbed a dozen stores across Los Angeles County since November.

Named for the green reflective safety vest he wore early in the series of robberies, the man is described as tall, in his 30s, with salt-and-pepper hair. L.A. County Sheriff’s deputies say he has robbed multiple Walgreens and CVS drug stores in Torrance, Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, Carson, Norwalk, Long Beach and, most recently, Lomita.

Sheriff's officials say the man has been armed with a handgun during the thefts and should be considered dangerous.

“This is one of the most active armed robbers in Los Angeles County this year,” Lt. Kent Wegener said in a statement. “We are hoping the public will help us identify him before his violence escalates.”

Officials say the most recent robbery occurred March 18 at a CVS store in Lomita.

Detectives are releasing surveillance photos of the suspect to aid in identification. Anyone with information is asked to contact Dets. Rich Alvarado or Nick Cannis at the L.A. County Sheriff’s major crimes detail at (562) 946-7893.

They may also provide information anonymously by calling  (800) 222-TIPS (8477).


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-- Matt Stevens


Photo: Surveillance video of the safety vest bandit. Credit: L.A. County Sheriff's Department.