POLICE UNIT'S TACTICS PAY OFF 'HOODED BANDIT' SUSPECT CAUGHT BY POLICE.
Authorities arrested a 28-year-old West Valley man, who they believe is the criminal dubbed the ``Hooded Bandit,'' early Friday on suspicion of robbing up to 54 minimarkets in the San Fernando Valley since May.
After hours of surveillance, police said Eshan Jalal was arrested after robbing a 24-hour Arco minimarket in the 20000 block of Vanowen Street. Police confiscated a small amount of cash, but found no weapon on the suspect, said Lt. Jim Grayson, who heads the robbery section of the Los Angeles Police Department's Robbery-Homicide Division.
Jalal was taken into custody without a struggle by a team of officers from the Valley and downtown Los Angeles at 12:55 a.m., about a mile away from his home, where he lived with his parents, Grayson said.
Police said the suspect, nicknamed the ``Hooded Bandit'' because he wore a sweat shirt with its hood over his head and a bandanna to conceal his face, was a menace who terrorized cashiers and other minimarket employees for months.
During the crime spree, the robber simulated a weapon and stole between $100 and $300 in cash from each store he robbed.
``He struck two to three times a day,'' Grayson said. ``People didn't know if he was armed or not.''
Grayson said Jalal was cooperative with detectives, telling them he was from Sri Lanka, that he wasn't earning money and couldn't find a job.
``So he turned to robbery,'' Grayson said.
Jalal was being held in lieu of $1.3 million bail at the West Valley Jail on Friday. Charges were expected to be filed by the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office on Monday.
LAPD Capt. Terry Hara introduces the officers involved in the surveillance that led to the arrest of the robbery suspect.
John Kennedy/Special to the Daily News
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|Publication:||Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)|
|Date:||Jul 28, 2001|
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