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Pair Suspected in 7 Robberies Have Taste for Pancakes, Pizza

TIMES STAFF WRITER

A two-man team of robbers is suspected in a series of San Diego restaurant robberies, including three at the International House of Pancakes.

In the latest hold-up Tuesday, the team hit another pancake house and then used as their getaway vehicle a pickup truck they had stolen Sunday from a Pizza Hut delivery man who had dropped off their order.

The robbery of the International House of Pancakes at 6135 Balboa Ave. was the seventh in a row committed by the team in the last three weeks, said San Diego Police Lt. Jerry Moody.

On Tuesday, a man entered the IHOP at 12:25 p.m., pointed a gun at an employee and demanded money, Moody said. The robber was given $773.

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A second man was waiting outside in a pickup truck. Police later found the abandoned truck about four blocks south of Balboa Avenue.

Police say the two robbers stole the truck Sunday from a Pizza Hut delivery driver as he was bringing an order to a room at the Plaza Hotel on 4th Avenue downtown.

An employee of the hotel said Wednesday that the two robbers were “borrowing” a room that another man had rented.

Police said the men tied up the delivery driver, then about half an hour later robbed an IHOP at 412 Washington St. in Hillcrest.

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“One of the men said something to the effect of, ‘Hi, I’m back again,’ ” Moody said. The men had robbed the restaurant Sept. 9, the first in the series of thefts, Moody said.

On Sept. 17, police believe the same pair robbed a Pizza Hut on University Avenue and a Dairy Queen on El Cajon Boulevard and, on Sept. 21, robbed O’Kelly’s Original Ice Cream on Midway.

There have been no injuries in any of the thefts.

In three of the seven robberies, the men arranged for a Coast Cab to be waiting for them after the robberies.

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“At first we thought that Coast Cab had something to do with the robberies,” Moody said. “Then we decided no, it was just a coincidence.”

Moody also said that police have interviewed the three cabbies and hotel personnel, and that they have “several good leads.”


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