PALO ALTO, Calif. (KRON) — The Palo Alto Police Department (PAPD) is investigating a robbery that occurred Wednesday afternoon outside the Stanford Shopping Center. Police said men armed with handguns approached a couple in their vehicle and made away with jewelry and a purse.
The victims, a man and woman in their 30s, had just walked back to their car in the parking lot when the robbery happened, PAPD said. Once they were seated, two cars pulled up behind them to prevent them from backing out and leaving. The cars were a white Dodge Challenger (above) and a white Audi sedan.
Two men got out of the Audi and approached the female victim, who was sitting in the passenger seat. Police said one suspect pointed a gun at her while the other reached into the car and took her purse. The armed suspect also ripped a watch off of her wrist.
The male victim got out of the car to help the other victim, but three more men then got out of the Dodge and approached him, according to police. After a physical struggle, one of the suspects punched the victim in the head and ripped a necklace off of his neck. They also tried to get the victim’s watch but were unable. Police said the victim had minor injuries.
PAPD said the suspect vehicles drove out of the parking lot together and drove eastbound on Sand Hill Road before getting caught in traffic just east of Arboretum Drive. The driver of the Dodge honked to try to get traffic to move and then rammed into the back of a pickup truck to clear space. Both suspect cars continued eastbound.
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The two men who robbed the female victim were described as having dark skin and wearing black ski masks and gloves. The men who robbed the male victim were all wearing dark clothing. The victim said one was a Hispanic man and another was about 6 feet tall.
Police said the suspects could face felony charges, including robbery, conspiracy, and assault with a deadly weapon for ramming the truck to escape. Anyone with information is asked to call 650-329-2413.