PROMENADE — With guns drawn, Santa Monica police arrested a suspected serial burglar at the corner of Washington Avenue and Second Street after a short car chase on Wednesday.

SMPD spokesman Sgt. Richard Lewis told the Daily Press that a worker with a retail store on the Third Street Promenade was walking along the popular shopping district when he noticed the suspect inside of clothing store Express. Recognizing him from a bulletin put out by The Gap, his employer, the man entered the store, alerting security of the suspect considered a potential “serial shoplifter.”

Security spotted the man stuffing goods into a bag, confirming the man’s initial suspicion. Security and the Good Samaritan notified plain-clothes community service officers on the promenade of the suspect’s presence, leading them to where he was last seen.

The suspect, perhaps realizing he was being watched, fled the store and ran to nearby Parking Structure No. 9. The suspect then entered structure No. 10 where he is said to have boarded a silver Nissan.

He exited the structure as police arrived, leading to a short chase that traveled west on Wilshire Boulevard, turning onto Ocean Avenue before ultimately ending up at the corner of Second Street and Washington Avenue at approximately 7:30 p.m.

Officers conducted a felony stop, with guns drawn, taking the man into custody. The man gave police a name, but had no identification to prove his claim. As of presstime, police were fingerprinting the suspect to determine his identity.

daniela@www.smdp.com

Editor in Chief Kevin Herrera contributed to this report.

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