ABOVE: Stock image (Source unknown)
SAN PABLO — A police officer phoned a robbery suspect asking for help to solve a crime, and the suspect agreed to travel to a designated meeting place, where he was promptly arrested on February 16.
Victims and witnesses from the robbery of an AutoZone store the prior night in San Pablo helped police investigators identify the suspect and getaway car. Police later determined the suspect’s phone number using vehicle registration information.
Deputies from the Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Office had additional evidence linking the same suspect and vehicle to other robberies that occurred in El Sobrante, which they obtained from videos recorded by surveillance cameras.
A San Pablo officer located the suspect’s vehicle but decided that, rather than confront the suspect immediately, he’d invite him to a planned meeting for his assistance in a police matter.
The suspect, 33-year-old Andre Conner of Richmond, was already on supervised parole, and the officer concocted a convincing story about an investigation—unrelated to the robberies that Conner is suspected of recently committing.
A meeting was arranged outside at a parking lot located near El Portal Drive and Church Lane, where San Pablo officers and deputies from the Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Officer waited for him.
Conner drove into the parking lot — in the same vehicle suspected of being used during robberies in El Sobrante, Richmond, and San Pablo. Inside the vehicle, police found items that were reported stolen, as well as an undisclosed amount of cash.
Officers arrested Conner, who was later booked at the West County Detention Facility. He is charged with robbery, second degree burglary, and violation of felony parole. He’s being held in custody in lieu of $120,000 bail.