Wed10222014

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Los Altos resident arrested for robbery spree


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Cronin

Los Altos Police apprehended the man believed to be responsible for a string of armed robberies in Los Altos.

According to Los Altos Police Capt. Andy Galea, 26-year-old Los Altos resident Thomas Andrew Cronin was arrested May 29, approximately 20 minutes after he allegedly robbed U.S. Bank at 1001 Fremont Ave.

A male Caucasian entered the bank at approximately 10:18 a.m. and demanded cash from a teller before fleeing with an undisclosed amount. Contrary to previous media reports, the suspect was armed at the time of the incident, Galea said.

He noted that a witness observed Cronin leaving the scene and provided police with a description of the vehicle including a partial license plate number. Officers intercepted the vehicle near the intersection of Rosita Avenue and Anderson Court, executed a stop and arrested Cronin.

“Based on the information provided, officers were able to link him to the (U.S. Bank) robbery at the scene of the stop,” said Galea, who added that Cronin was taken to the Los Altos Police Station before being booked into the Santa Clara County Main Jail on one count of armed robbery.

Since the arrest, investigators have linked Cronin to several additional armed robberies that occurred in Los Altos since February, according to Galea. The Santa Clara County District Attorney’s office filed seven additional robbery counts against Cronin Friday.

He is charged with robbing Comerica Bank in downtown Los Altos twice – in March and April – and Bank of the West at 176 Main St. Feb. 11.

In addition, the 26-year-old suspect is charged with two armed robberies of Standard Liquor at 303 First St. in February and March and single counts for the mid-May robberies of the Shell gas station at 929 Fremont Ave. and Round Table Pizza at 399 First St.

Galea said the Los Altos Police Department dedicated numerous hours to investigating the robberies and tracking down the suspect.

“In all honesty, there hasn’t been a day that’s gone by where we haven’t talked about this. … We have put a tremendous amount of work into following up any lead possible,” Galea said. “To have this amount of robberies in any city is unusual, but to have one individual stay (and commit robberies) in one small geographical area like Los Altos is very unusual.”

Galea credited the FBI as well as neighboring police agencies in Mountain View and Palo Alto for assisting the Los Altos Police department.

“They were a big part of this investigation,” said Galea, noting that all three agencies arrived at the scene of last week’s arrest to aid Los Altos police.

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