Police at first thought that 17-year-old Genia Moore was kidnaped from the upper-crust, Northern California community of Atherton. Now, they suspect that she went along willingly with a worldly 16-year-old boy on a three-day, two-state crime foray.
Moore and Luke Collura appeared in Riverside County Juvenile Court on Tuesday on charges of robbery, grand theft auto and being armed with a gun. Robert Spitzer, supervisor of the district attorney’s office’s juvenile division, said Superior Court Judge Gordon Burkhart ordered the pair detained until a Feb. 20 hearing.
Spitzer said the district attorney has asked the court to order them to stand trial as adults.
Moore’s parents have declined comment, while Collura’s parents in Hammond, La., described their son as a troubled young man desperate for attention.
Started on Friday
“Luke is crazy for attention,” said his father, Luke Collura Sr. “When those bulls (detectives) get him in Riverside, they’re gonna sit him down and he’s going to confess to killing John Kennedy. That’s the type of boy he is.”
The teen-agers’ odyssey on the other side of the law, police said, began Friday when Moore escorted Collura into her parents’ home in Atherton, a community in San Mateo County, south of San Francisco. The parents were ordered at gunpoint into a basement while Collura allegedly cut the telephone lines and made off with the family car and $3,500 worth of jewelry.
Police said that Collura and Moore also are suspected of abducting two 14-year-old girls from a Las Vegas shopping mall Friday night, robbing them and releasing them an hour later.
From there, police said, the two went to Reno, where they allegedly abandoned the Moores’ car, caught a ride with a man, stole $28 from him and made off with his four-wheel drive vehicle after pointing a gun at him and ordering him out of the vehicle near Virginia City, Nev.
Held After Holdup
Sgt. Joe Szeles of the Riverside County Sheriff’s Office said the two were arrested Sunday night after allegedly holding up a Moreno Valley doughnut shop. Szeles said that incident came only minutes after Moore walked into the shop, pulled a gun, ordered a waitress to empty the cash register and yanked out a telephone cord as she left with the cash.
Atherton police released a statement Tuesday saying that charges of burglary, robbery, auto theft and kidnaping were being sought against both Collura and Moore. Evidence indicates that the young woman “was active in the initial planning of the Atherton crime,” the statement said.
Szeles said she also appears to have been active in the Southern California crime: “In my mind it was clear she was a participant and not a victim.” He said the two suspects told him that they embarked on the crime spree “just to have fun.”