COSTA MESA (CBSLA.com) – A suspect linked to a possible string of approximately two-dozen armed robberies at Orange County businesses over the past few weeks struck again Tuesday afternoon, this time at a McDonald’s in Costa Mesa.
At approximately 4:20 p.m., a man entered the McDonald’s in the 3000 block of Bristol Street and gave the cashier a demand note while brandishing a handgun in the waistband of his pants, according to Costa Mesa police.
After receiving cash, he fled on foot. Along with Costa Mesa police officers, a Huntington Beach police chopper scoured the neighborhood for the suspect without success.
No one was injured in the robbery.
Authorities say at least 23 armed holdups in Orange County since July 10 have being linked to the same suspect. The robberies have occurred in Huntington Beach, Fountain Valley, Santa Ana, Westminster, Garden Grove, Orange and Los Alamitos.
On Monday night, the suspect robbed a Chipotle Restaurant in Huntington Beach and a Jack in the Box in Santa Ana. During the spree, he has also robbed a Subway, Del Taco, and El Pollo Loco.
The crimes are similar detectives say, with the suspect showing his gun and passing notes threatening to kill the employees if they don’t hand over the cash. Sometimes he wears a wig and often has sunglasses on.
A surveillance photo of the suspect from the McDonald’s robbery was released by police Wednesday. The suspect is described as Hispanic, in his 20s, 5-foot-11 with a medium build. In the robbery he was wearing dark grey shorts and a black long-sleeve sweater.
In the Chipotle robbery in Huntington Beach Monday night, the suspect was wearing a white shirt, baseball cap and green pants. He took at least $500.
In the Jack in the Box robbery, the armed bandit had a flannel shirt tied around his neck, and at one point leaned on the counter so he could keep an eye on the Jack in the Box employee who went to another cash register to get the money.
Anyone with information on the latest robbery can call Costa Mesa police at 714-754-5637 or Crime Stoppers at 855-TIP-OCCS.
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