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West Valley Focus

NORTHRIDGE : Heavy Booty Fells Would-Be Robber

October 19, 1994|JEANNETTE REGALDO

A would-be robber found out that crime can be a weighty business.

First, he held up two employees of a Northridge McDonald's as they returned from a bank with money. Unfortunately, what he tried to steal was a bag filled with $180 in coins--a load so heavy he had to drop it to clear a fence as he tried to flee. Then he ran smack dab into a police officer.

"When this guy tried to run with the money, it was too heavy," said Sgt. Mike Sonntag, of the Los Angeles Police Department's Devonshire division. "Some big heist."

Marebell Velez, 30, and Nancy Solis, 32, had just come back from the bank with $180 in change for the restaurant Monday when David Lydell Jones, 19, and an accomplice robbed them in the parking lot.

Jones grabbed the loot and took off, but as he attempted to jump a fence, he couldn't do it with the heavy booty, police said, so he dropped it.

After jumping a few back-yard fences and running into traffic on Reseda Boulevard, Jones caught the attention of Officer David Gray of the LAPD's Valley Traffic Division.

"When I saw him, he was sweating and panting," said Gray, who was on his motorcycle at the corner of Lemarsh Street and Reseda Boulevard. "He said two people were chasing him and trying to kill him. Then I heard the radio call about the robbery and he fit the description almost perfectly."

Jones was arrested Monday on suspicion of robbery and is being held in lieu of $35,000 bail at the LAPD's Devonshire station.

His accomplice is still at large, police said.

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