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Arrests made in attempted carjackings

Trio targeted motorists Saturday in La Cañada Flintridge and Glendale.

December 22, 2010

Police have arrested a young man and a teenager suspected of attempted carjackings early Saturday morning in La Cañada Flintridge and Glendale, while a third suspect remains at large.

The first carjacking attempt occurred after midnight at the intersection of La Cañada and Foothill boulevards in La Cañada. Three men approached a car stopped at a traffic light and one of them pounded on the car door with his pistol and demanded that the motorist exit his vehicle. But the motorist accelerated through the red light to avoid them, said Sgt. Ray Harley of the Crescenta Valley Sheriff's Station.

By 1:30 a.m., the group apparently made its way down to Glendale, where they allegedly brandished a gun at a driver stopped at the onramp from Verdugo Boulevard to the southbound Glendale (2) Freeway, near Valihi Way. That motorist sped away and quickly contacted police, said Glendale police Sgt. Tom Lorenz.

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Moments later, Glendale police located the three suspects at the nearby CVS Pharmacy parking lot at Verdugo and Valihi, arresting 23-year-old Jose Guevara on suspicion of felony carjacking around 2 a.m.

Two others were able to flee the scene, but a handgun was recovered in the area, Lorenz said.

Police returned to the area at around 8:30 a.m. to capture a second suspect, a 17-year-old boy from Los Angeles, after receiving a call from CVS employees that a suspicious person had entered the store to buy a change of clothes.

"When CVS opened up, an individual entered the store looking nervous, wet and dirty. It looked like he had mud on him," said Lorenz. "He purchased a sweatshirt, and store personnel aware of the earlier carjacking phoned the police department. We sent officers, set up a perimeter and, knowing the suspects were armed and dangerous, evacuated the employees at the store."

Harley said deputies were called to respond to a small car fire near Chevy Chase Drive and Foothill Boulevard around the same time as the attempted carjacking there — incidents investigators believe are likely related, as the burned vehicle appears to have been stolen from the Los Angeles metropolitan area.

"They might have fled from that stolen car and then attempted the carjacking to flee the scene," Harley said.

Guevara and the youth remain in custody, the minor at a juvenile hall and Guevara at Glendale City Jail in lieu of $100,000 bond.

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