A man with an ankle monitor and who was already on parole for robbery has been arrested after allegedly committing armed robbery at a cell phone store after he allegedly held up two employees at gun point and ran away with money from the cash register.
The incident occurred at approximately 2:18 p.m. on Sunday when the Culver City Police Department in California received a call saying that an armed robbery had just taken place at a Boost Mobile store located at 4114 Centinela Ave. about three miles northeast of Los Angeles International Airport, according to the Culver City Police Department (CCPD).
When officers arrived to investigate they spoke with the two victims who were Boost Mobile employees who told them what had just happened and provided authorities with video surveillance footage of the robbery.
“Officers learned that the suspect, described as a Male, Black, wearing a blue hooded sweatshirt, blue sweatpants, a white mask, and blue surgical gloves, entered the store and pointed a black semi-automatic handgun at both victims,” said the Culver City Police Department in a statement posted on social media. “The suspect then jumped over the counter and forced both employees to lay face down, while he grabbed money from the cash register. The suspect took approximately $500 in US currency and fled the store on foot.”
However, after officers reviewed the security camera footage, they noticed that the suspect had dropped a set of car keys during the theft of the store which led them to conduct an area check.
It didn’t take long for authorities to locate a possible suspect vehicle that was parked one block away from the scene of the crime and, when the responding officers looked inside the car, “they observed the clothing that was worn by the suspect in the rear seat,” Culver City Police Department said.
Authorities continued to search the area and shortly after observed a man matching the description that was given to them by the Boost Mobile employees as well as the surveillance video that was captured of the armed robbery. The Culver City Police Department subsequently approached the suspect, 37-year-old Lawrence Bell from Torrance, California, and he was detained without incident.
“A search of the vehicle revealed a driver’s license in the detained subject’s name (Lawrence Bell), a loaded Glock Semi-automatic handgun, and the aforementioned clothing worn by the suspect during the commission of the robbery,” said the CCPD. “Additionally, the currency stolen during the robbery and other items of evidentiary value were recovered from inside the vehicle.”
Following Bell’s arrest, authorities discovered that he was already on parole for robbery and that he was “wearing an ankle monitor as a condition of his parole at the time of the robbery,” according to the CCPD.
It is unclear if Bell has legal representation but the case will be presented to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office at a date that has yet to be decided.