PUBLIC SAFETY FACILITY — Santa Monica police officers, with the help of the Los Angeles Police Department, apprehended three men believed responsible for a string of street robberies that occurred in Santa Monica, West Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley, authorities said Thursday.

SMPD Sgt. Richard Lewis said the three male suspects were arrested May 18 by officers with the LAPD’s West Valley Division after they received a suspicious persons call.

The three suspects were identified as Ali Karimi, 19, of Chatsworth; Theophilus Marcoe Ammons, 19, of Rialto; and a 16-year-old male from Northridge.

The first robbery occurred on May 14 at 3:30 p.m. in the 600 block of Adelaide Avenue, Lewis said. A woman told officers that she got off a bus at the corner of Seventh Street and San Vicente Boulevard and was walking to work when the three suspects approached, one with a knife, and took her property. The suspects fled in an older model Mercedes Benz. A partial license plate number was obtained.

Later that day, the Beverly Hills Police Department received a report of three suspicious men matching the suspects’ descriptions driving a Mercedes around town. Police said the men left the city when they saw a resident watching them. As the investigation continued, detectives learned that the same suspects and vehicle committed an armed robbery later that day in the San Fernando Valley.

On May 17, Lewis said another street robbery was reported at approximately 11 p.m. in the 1200 block of Second Street in Santa Monica. In this robbery, two African-American males approached the victims and demanded they hand over their property. One of the suspects had a gun. The suspects fled in the same older model Mercedes. At that point, investigators believed the two Santa Monica robberies were related.

Approximately 90 minutes after that robbery, another was reported in the LAPD’s Wilshire Division. Investigators with both law enforcement agencies combined forces and all three suspects were linked to the robberies, Lewis said.

The investigation is ongoing.

kevinh@www.smdp.com

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