Robbery suspect charged with four felonies
A criminal complaint has been filed against one of the two men arrested in connection to an armed robbery Sunday night in the area of Magnolia Avenue and 3rd Street.
Joel Lara, 20, who was re-arrested Thursday at the Yuma Regional Medical Center, was arraigned later that same day in Yuma Justice Court, where he was charged with one count each of aggravated robbery, armed robbery, aggravated assault and misconduct involving weapons.
Lara, who was arrested on the scene after a vehicle allegedly used in the robbery crashed into a tree when a Yuma police officer attempted to conduct a traffic stop on it, is being held on a $50,000 bond. His next court date is a preliminary hearing set for 4 pm. Nov. 1.
Yuma police are also still searching for a second suspect in the robbery, who may also have been injured when an airbag deployed during the collision, but no details describing him are available.
At about 10:06 pm. Sunday, Yuma police received reports of an armed robbery in the area of Magnolia Avenue and 3rd Street. An initial investigation revealed two men had been walking in that area when a tan 2005 Buick Rendezvous occupied by two other men approached them.
One of the occupants got out of the vehicle, reportedly armed with a handgun, and demanded money from one of the pedestrians. The assailant was given an undisclosed amount of money, got back into the Buick and fled the area.
The vehicle was later seen by a responding officer who attempted a traffic stop. The driver reportedly did not stop and later struck a tree in the front yard of a residence in the 400 block of South 24th Avenue. The two occupants of the Buick then exited the wrecked vehicle and fled on foot.
Lara was arrested on scene but the second unidentified man was able to elude police. Lara was injured during the collision and was taken to Yuma Regional Medical Center to receive treatment for a non-life threatening injury.
Police later learned the Buick had been reported stolen from the Yuma area on Oct. 9.
YPD encourages anyone with any information about this case to call Detective Skaggs at 373-4702, the YPD main line at 373-4700 or 78-CRIME to remain anonymous. Anyone who provides a tip leading to an arrest in this case may be eligible to receive a cash reward up to $1,000.
James Gilbert can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 539-6854. Find him on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/YSJamesGilbert or on Twitter @YSJamesGilbert