Authorities sought the public’s help Tuesday to find a man who threatened an electronics store employee with a hatchet and shot a BB gun at Walmart workers, hitting one, during three separate robberies at East County retailers.
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The robberies date back to Feb. 28, when the suspect pulled a hatchet on a loss prevention officer who caught him stealing a camera from the Best Buy on Fletcher Parkway in La Mesa, according to the sheriff’s department and Crime Stoppers.
The two other heists occurred at Walmart stores in unincorporated El Cajon and in Santee on March 21, authorities said.
Around 12:10 a.m. that day, the suspect fired a BB or CO2 handgun several times at a manager at the Camino Canada Walmart in El Cajon while attempting to escape with at least two rifle-style BB guns he had stolen.
Around 11 that night, the suspect fired a BB gun at an assistant manager at the Walmart on Town Center Parkway in Santee, but ended up striking another employee in the shoulder, authorities said. The suspect left a wallet behind that belonged to an identity theft victim whose credit cards were used at three businesses in San Diego.
A detailed description of the suspect was not immediately available, and the vehicle he was seen driving was described differently in each heist — as a brown four-door Buick, an older model silver Buick-type vehicle and a brown sedan.
Anyone with information on the cases was asked to call the Santee Sheriff’s Station at (619) 956-4000. Anonymous tips can be submitted by calling Crime Stoppers at (888) 580-8477, or by contacting the agency via email at sdcrimestoppers.org.
—City News Service
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