BEVERLY HILLS (CBSLA) – Three gang members have been arrested in connection with a brazen daylight shooting at a crowded upscale Beverly Hills restaurant back in March which left a woman wounded, federal authorities announced Wednesday.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office reports that 20-year-old Malik Lamont Powell, 18-year-old Khai McGhee and 30-year-old Marquise Anthony Gardon, all allegedly members of the Rollin 30s Harlem Crips gang, were taken into custody Tuesday.
The documented gang members made their initial appearances in U.S. District Court in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, officials said.
A magistrate judge ordered Powell and McGhee detained and scheduled June 3 arraignment hearings. Gardon was granted release on a $25,000 bond and will be arraigned June 17.
All are charged with one federal count each of conspiracy to interfere with commerce by robbery in the March 4 incident at Il Pastaio, in which several masked men attempted to rob one of the restaurant’s patrons.
Just after 2 p.m. on that day, three masked suspects walked up to a man who was lunching at an outdoor patio at Il Pastaio, located at Brighton Way and North Canon Drive.
The target of the armed robbery told CBSLA at the time that one of the suspects wrapped their arm around his neck and put a gun behind his ear, the second held his arm out and the third snatched a $500,000 Richard Mille watch off his arm. CBSLA learned he was the co-owner of jewelry store TZURI.
However, the man — a former Israeli soldier — fought back and tried to yank the gun away. During the scuffle, the gun went off twice. A woman who was lunching at a nearby table was struck in the leg. Her injuries were not life threatening. A second woman was also hurt.
The suspects escaped with the watch, which has not yet been recovered, Beverly Hills police reported Wednesday.
Based on interviews and surveillance video, investigators determined that a total of five people were involved in the robbery, prosecutors said. Powell and McGhee were identified as two of the three men involved in the armed robbery itself, while Gardon served as a getaway driver, the complaint reads.
McGhee’s DNA was found on the robbery victim’s clothing.
Powell’s black BMW was used as the getaway vehicle, prosecutors allege. Investigators also traced both Powell’s and Gardon’s cell phones to the area of Il Pastaio at the time of the robbery.
Surveillance cameras showed the men scouting the area prior to the robbery, while cameras also captured Gardon getting into the driver’s seat of the BMW just prior to it.
The three men were expected to make their first court appearances Wednesday afternoon in federal court in downtown L.A.