Police put out a picture of a possible suspect taken from a video camera at nearby store and then rescinded it, after investigation showed that wasn't the man.
Here are the latest details:
On August 21, 2013, Santa Cruz Police Department officers responded and investigated a report of a robbery in the Gateway Plaza, 650 River Street. The plaza houses several retail and service businesses
Officers learned that a 27 year old employee of one of the businesses was robbed at gunpoint in the parking lot of Gateway Plaza. The victim was walking to her car when she was confronted by a lone gunman armed with a short-barreled revolver. The suspect demanded the victim’s purse and money. The victim was not performing any functions related to her employment at the time of the robbery.
The gunman took the victim’s purse and fled toward Josephine Street (which borders the south side of Gateway Plaza). A witness watched the suspect fleeing from the plaza lot east on Josephine Street toward the San Lorenzo River levee. The witness began to follow the suspect. The witness reported that the suspect turned and fired 1-2 shots in his direction. The sound of gunfire was also reported by several other witnesses.
Detectives are canvassing the area and backdrops, but have not been able to verify that gunshots were fired. There have been no rounds recovered as of the time of this writing, (and since the weapon was a revolver, there would not be shell casings).
Initial responders were quick to set up a perimeter and initiated a canine search for the suspect through the businesses in the area and the San Lorenzo River levee area. CHP, State Parks, Capitola Police, and the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office assisted with the search and perimeter locations. Additionally, the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office deployed their fixed–wing aircraft for aerial surveillance. Officers blocked off surrounding streets during the manhunt. Streets were closed for approximately 90 minutes throughout the ordeal. The suspect was not located; however, officers recovered the victim’s purse in the 100 block of Josephine Street.
In checking video surveillance of nearby businesses, Detectives recovered an image believed to be the suspect from a business in the complex. That image is attached to this media release.
The suspect is described as:
Hispanic Male Adult
5’ 7”- thin build
Wearing black hooded sweatshirt, black bandana, grey pants.