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2 Held in Series of Holdups in South County, Balboa

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Authorities said they have arrested a young Anaheim man and a Compton teen-ager suspected of holding up five people at gunpoint in separate incidents Wednesday night.

The suspects allegedly stole a watch, some clothes and a wallet in a series of robberies and attempted robberies that began about 8:40 p.m. in a Mission Viejo parking lot and ended with their arrests on Balboa Peninsula shortly before 11 p.m., police said.

The Anaheim man, 20-year-old Robert Mason Borders, was being held at Orange County Jail in Santa Ana in lieu of $50,000 bail. A 16-year-old from Compton, whose name was withheld because of his age, was detained at Juvenile Hall in Orange.

Sheriff’s Lt. Richard J. Olson said Thursday that the crime spree began when a man armed with a revolver held up a 34-year-old El Segundo man who was sitting in his van at 28302 Marguerite Parkway in Mission Viejo.

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The victim fled when the robber demanded the keys to his vehicle, Olson said, adding that the man later discovered some personal documents and clothes missing.

About 20 minutes later, the suspects allegedly robbed a 31-year-old Costa Mesa man who was waiting at a bus stop at the intersection of Moulton Parkway and El Toro Road in Laguna Hills.

“The suspects demanded money, but took the victim’s watch instead,” Olson said. Deputies who searched the area found the documents and clothes from the first robbery in a nearby parking lot, Olson said.

The suspects later robbed a 44-year-old man of his wallet--valued at $75--in front of the Albertson’s supermarket on East Coast Highway in Corona del Mar, Newport Beach Police Sgt. Andy Gonis said.

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Minutes later, one of the suspects pointed a gun at a 50-year-old woman who was parking her car on Iris Street in Newport Beach, Gonis said. But he said the woman “began screaming and honking her horn (and) the suspect ran away without taking any money.”.

The two suspects then allegedly held up a 35-year-old man sitting near 14th and West Bay streets, but released him after realizing that he was not carrying any valuables.

Two minutes after the last holdup, Newport Beach Officer Mark Hassell stopped the suspects’ vehicle near Miramar and M streets, but the suspects fled on foot. They were found about half an hour later during a search by Newport Beach and Costa Mesa police.

Gonis said police discovered that the suspects’ vehicle had been stolen in Brea last Sunday.

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“These were very bold robberies,” Gonis said. “We don’t find many people who pull off robbery after robbery within minutes of each other.”


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