Oakland police think they have found the gang behind at least some of the rash of restaurant robberies that plagued the East Bay this summer.
Yesterday they arrested three people they say perpetrated three of the takeover-style heists, in which hoodie-wearing men enter restaurants at night, force employees and patrons into a back room, and clean out the cash register.
The Oakland residents were arrested Tuesday evening after they allegedly departed from their successful MO and knocked over a nail salon. Police were given a description of the getaway car, which they spotted, followed and stopped. Inside they found ski masks, guns and the money from the nail salon.
Among the arrestees was the getaway driver, a 20-year-old woman whom police said was the girlfriend of one of the bandits.
Contradicting Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums who said the string of robberies were a result of the poor economy, a police spokesman said “These aren’t guys who lost their jobs and got desperate… These are people who had access to guns and get off on the thrill of robbing people.” And the brother of one of the suspects commented:
He’s got no reason to be doing nothing like this. He’s not a drug addict, not in a bind, there’s no pressure situation. He was cool, man. He missed his calling: He should have been a basketball star. He’s an incredible basketball player. He don’t have no reason to be robbing no restaurants. That kind of (expletive) is serious and petty at the same time, you know?