SAN JOSE (KRON) — San Jose police have arrested two men accused of at least 13 armed robberies targeting street vendors, Ofc. Albert Morales said.
The robberies happened between Jul. 30 and Sept. 16 and targeted victims in East San Jose, police said. Several victims said they were beaten and pistol-whipped during the robberies, before having their cash, phone, and food items taken.
“These suspects viciously targeted a segment of our society that needed our help the most. Immigrant groups already face numerous challenges and this criminal victimization does nothing to help their integration into the social embroidery of our city,” Sgt. Jaime Jimenez said.
The suspects have been identified as 24-year-old Michaelangelo Cortez Lopez and 19-year-old Richard Cortez Lopez. Both residents are of San Jose.
”Robbery detectives worked tirelessly for two months investigating the string of robberies, which included interviewing victims and witnesses, gathering physical evidence, and conducting surveillance. In an effort to educate potential victims, Robbery detectives also reached out to street vendors to provide awareness and safety tips during the robbery spree,” Morales said in a press release.
Both suspects were arrested at their East San Jose home on Wednesday, police said.
Police believe there may be more victims.