SAN JOSE – 20-year-old Michael Contreras, 20-year-old David Ballesteros, and 18-year-old Louis Bui have been charged with multiple counts of robbery under PC 211-212.5(c), which holds a 2 – 5 year prison sentence for each charge. On Thursday, April 30, they were arrested for armed robbery after they held up a male victim to collect cash from the register of a local liquor store.
According to court records, the three suspects arrived at Vucko’s Liquor Store at 1585 Meridian Avenue in San Jose. One suspect told the clerk to give him the money while brandishing a black colored hand gun. The clerk, fearing for his safety, quickly handed the suspect a total of $250.00 from the register. A witness watched as the three suspects exited the business, and checked the area finding that the store had just been robbed. The witness reported to responding officers that he saw the three young men exit the liquor store “hunched over and running”. He took the down the license plate number of the white colored sedan, which he thought might have been a Cadillac.
Several minutes later, a San Jose Police officer spotted the same vehicle driving in the area of Meridian Avenue and Willow Street. After stopping the vehicle, police initiated a felony stop procedure, asking the driver to exit the vehicle. During the initial request to keep his “hands up” the suspect appeared to keep reaching into his waistband. Police were aware that the suspects were known to be armed and dangerous. SJPD officers again told the suspects, “Hands up, show me your hands.”
After exiting the vehicle, an SJPD officer then told the suspect Bui to lay forward on his stomach, and place his hands straight out in front of him. The officer heard the possible sound of a hand gun hitting the pavement as he lay down. Once in custody SJPD officers were able to obtain a semi-automatic chrome handgun. Bui began to tell the arresting officer, “He told me to hold it.” The officer responded, “Hold what?” Suspect Bui said, “Hold the gun.”
A total of five suspects were taken into custody, with two juveniles taken to juvenile hall for riding with the three robbery suspects Contreras, Ballesteros, and Bui. Two of the suspects were found to be carrying loaded firearms.
The next court date has been scheduled for Friday, October 9 at 9:00 AM in Dept 34 in front of the Honorable Shelyna V. Brown. Each suspect has acknowledged the sentencing of the maximum of five years with time served, pending the possibility of parole before the end of the sentence.