Caught on Camera: Suspect in robbery series arrested in Otay Mes - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Caught on Camera: Suspect in robbery series arrested in Otay Mesa

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SAN DIEGO (NEWS 8/CNS) - A SWAT standoff lead to a dramatic arrest in Otay Mesa early Thursday morning.
     
It happened around 6 a.m. in the 1300 block of Pequena Street. News 8 viewer John Gies says sheriff's deputies swarmed his neighbor's house and he heard flash bangs go off inside the home. 

Gies captured exclusive cell phone video as a SWAT team entered the home. 

"The police instructed me to get out of the way because they were going in, so I moved and continued recording," Gies said.

San Diego County Sheriff's deputies say the suspect was wanted for holding up a CVS store on Palm Avenue in Imperial Beach. 

"When you have a suspect who already has shown violent tendencies believed to be armed with a handgun those are the techniques we use to make sure everyone is as safe as possible," Ryan Keim, SD County Sheriff said.

On Thursday, police said they were investigating a possible connection between a string of robberies this summer at CVS pharmacies across San Diego.

Early on the morning May 7, a man with similar physical attributes jumped over the counter at a CVS pharmacy in North Park. During that robbery, the suspect lifted his shirt and displayed the handle of a gun before fleeing with bottles of cough syrup, police said. He wore a black puffy jacket and fled in a gray Nissan Altima.

On May 11, a masked man pulled off a nearly identical heist at a CVS on Mira Mesa Boulevard. The thief jumped the counter, showed off a gun, stole cough syrup and escaped in a waiting vehicle.

The next heist occurred the next night in the Rolando area when a black man in a puffy jacket jumped over the pharmacy counter and told everyone to get on the ground before getting away, police said

In July, the spate of robberies picked back up when a man who covered his face with a bandana held up the same CVS on Mira Mesa Boulevard that was hit May 11. The suspect, described by witnesses as a 6-foot-3-inch and 200 pound black man, jumped the counter, told employees not to move and made off with medication, according to the SDPD.

Last month, it was the CVS in Hillcrest that was robbed on Aug. 13 in a similar fashion, with the suspect again jumping over the counter and making off with medicine. That suspect was described as a black man between 5 feet 8 inches and 6 feet tall, wearing a black hoodie, gray pants and white shoes.

Four days later, a thief was confronted by a CVS employee in National City while stealing display items from that store, police said. Though different from the other robberies in mode and location -- it was the only one outside of San Diego city limits -- the suspect claimed to have a gun and was able to escape.

On Sept. 3, the possibly related heists picked back up when a man jumped over the counter early in the morning at the Hillcrest CVS, ordered employees not to call police and fled with several prescription medications. The suspect was described as wearing a gray hooded sweatshirt, a black mask and blue jeans.

Last week, two men pulled off a similar robbery at a Walgreens pharmacy in North Park, jumping the counter, demanding drugs and making off with Oxycodone and cough syrup.

The suspect was taken into custody and will face several charges, according to authorities. 

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