MANY AREA RESTAURANT OWNERS THINK ROBBERS WILL STRIKE AGAIN.Byline: SUE DOYLE Staff Writer
RESEDA -- It's been four months since the Ski Mask bandits last robbed a San Fernando Valley San Fernando Valley
Valley, southern California, U.S. Northwest of central Los Angeles, the valley is bounded by the San Gabriel, Santa Susana, and Santa Monica mountains and the Simi Hills. eatery, but no local restaurant owner restaurant owner n → dueño/a or propietario/a de un restaurante thinks the aggressive gunmen have ended their two-year crime spree.
About 25 restaurant owners through the California Restaurant Association and some Los Angeles Los Angeles (lôs ăn`jələs, lŏs, ăn`jəlēz'), city (1990 pop. 3,485,398), seat of Los Angeles co., S Calif.; inc. 1850. Council members met with Los Angeles police Monday at a town-hall meeting to learn more about techniques to fortify for·ti·fy
v. for·ti·fied, for·ti·fy·ing, for·ti·fies
To make strong, as:
a. To strengthen and secure (a position) with fortifications.
b. To reinforce by adding material. their businesses against the heists.
``''We're dealing with a predator predator
an animal that derives its life support by predation. ,'' said Michel Moore, the Valley's top cop. ``These predators are out there and we know they will be back.''
Operating in teams of two or three, the disguised men display a fierce takeover style, saying very little to their victims beyond shoving guns in their faces and demanding money and valuables.
Police estimate the crew is responsible for at least 52 restaurant robberies in the Valley and for killing one man in cold blood at a Thai eatery. Their last known robbery was in August on Cahuenga Boulevard at Ca Del Sole after a summer of 11 heists.
Police are not surprised that the bandits have gone underground. Last year, the crew went from October to March without hitting up a restaurant.
``You could say it's typical,'' said Detective Michael Gannon. ``You just don't know Don't know (DK, DKed)
"Don't know the trade." A Street expression used whenever one party lacks knowledge of a trade or receives conflicting instructions from the other party. when these people start and stop.''
Gannon said police are also investigating a robbery at a Los Feliz Japanese restaurant Sept. 14 that could possibly be the work of the Ski Mask Bandits.
Detectives also discussed a lone bandit bandit: see brigandage. who hit up about 23 Valley restaurants, the last one in March. Police said the man is likely in jail on unrelated charges.
One Valley restaurant owner urged others to install extra lights in their parking lots after a group of thugs waited in the darkness behind his establishment and robbed his staff.
``My fiancee was manhandled. This guy was going to kill her,'' said the man who would only give his first name of Dale out of concern that the group would retaliate. ``She was yanked up by her hair.''
He now has lights all over the back of his restaurant.
Showing surveillance video from two restaurant robberies, detectives asked the room of restaurant owners inside the West Valley community police station what they could have done to change the outcome of the heists.
Authorities recommended silent-alarm systems, digital surveillance cameras, extra lights in parking lots and calling police as soon as things don't seem right.
Councilman Dennis Zine said the robberies have intimidated in·tim·i·date
tr.v. in·tim·i·dat·ed, in·tim·i·dat·ing, in·tim·i·dates
1. To make timid; fill with fear.
2. To coerce or inhibit by or as if by threats. patrons and discouraged them from eating out. In some cases, restaurant owners said if they are robbed again, they will close up shop.
``These folks have done a lot of harm to a lot of people,'' Zine said.
He said Monday's meeting put restaurant owners in touch with the right resources to keep business on track.
The Los Angeles City Council The Los Angeles City Council is the governing body of the City of Los Angeles, California, United States. has offered a $75,000 reward for information leading to the arrests of the Ski Mask Bandits.