San Mateo Police Nab Suspect in Robbery, Kidnapping at Verizon Store
SAN MATEO–“Can you hear me now?” That’s a question 23-year-old Tajri Turner of San Francisco will be asking over a jail phone after being charged Wednesday with armed robbery and kidnapping by San Mateo Police. According to a police media release, on the morning of September 3rd, Turner robbed a store at gunpoint in the 1700 block of Gum Street. Police withheld the name of the store, but several news sources report, and a store employee confirmed, that the robbery occurred at the Verizon Infinitel Wireless at 1701 Gum Street.
According to the San Mateo Police Department, officers were dispatched to the store around 11:10 a.m., just 10 minutes after the store opened. A female employee was alone in the store when Turner entered. “There were no other employees or customers present,” said Sgt. Rick Decker. Turner brandished a handgun and demanded merchandise, grabbing the female employee by her shirt and forcing her to a back storage area. Turner then made the employee fill a bag with brand new cell phones, after which he took the bag, departed the store and drove off. The employee notified police and was able to provide a description of Turner as well as a partial license plate number.
After arriving at the scene, officers searched the surrounding neighborhoods. They managed to locate a car matching the employee’s description near Palm Avenue and 25th Avenue, only a mile from the crime scene. Police set up surveillance of the car. Not long after, a black male matching the employee’s description of the suspect was seen walking to the car, at which point officers made their move. Turner fled, but he didn’t get far. Police detained him and took him into custody.
A search of Turner’s vehicle turned up the stolen cell phones and the handgun used in the robbery. He was booked into the San Mateo County Jail and charged with armed robbery and kidnapping.
“SMPD wishes to thank the victim in this case for not only their bravery and tenacity, but also for their cooperation that undoubtedly led to the arrest,” the media release stated. “We rely every day on our community to be our ‘eyes and ears,’ and this incident demonstrates that principle.”
San Jose Mercury News: San Mateo: Police Arrest Suspect in Verizon Store Armed Robbery