SDPD investigating possible connection in 3 Friday night armed robberies

Car roof
(File photo)

Employees at three supermarkets were confronted by a gunman Friday night, Feb. 5, and San Diego police are investigating whether the same man is responsible for all three holdups, authorities said.

Witnesses at each location gave similar physical descriptions of a man who appeared to be White and in his 50s, with some discrepancies in the clothing descriptions, police said. The first two robberies happened in quick succession at a Gelson’s grocery store near Del Mar, and minutes later at a Vons in Del Mar Heights; the third, which ended up being an attempted robbery, occurred about 90 minutes later at an Albertsons in Rancho Bernardo.

In all instances, the gunman lifted his shirt to display a weapon tucked into his waistband.

The first was reported about 9:10 p.m. at Gelson’s on Via De La Valle just off Interstate 5, according to San Diego police. The robber made off with an undisclosed amount of cash.

Witnesses described that robber as roughly 5 feet 11 inches tall with graying hair, wearing a blue or gray hooded sweatshirt, a white shirt and a blue or gray baseball cap. He was seen fleeing the scene in a gray hatchback vehicle.

Minutes later, at 9:16 p.m., a robbery was reported at the Vons grocery store off Del Mar Heights Road, three miles south. That robber also got away with cash.

Witnesses described the gunman as a thin, 5 feet 8 inches tall, with short brown or grayish hair, wearing a hat, jacket and belt, along with a gray or blue mask.

Just after 11 p.m., an attempted robbery was reported at the Albertsons on Rancho Bernardo Road and Pomerado Road. For unknown reasons, the gunman left the store empty-handed.

Witnesses described the would-be robber as roughly 5 feet 8 inches tall, wearing a gray sweatshirt, gray sweatpants and a gray beanie hat.
— Alex Riggins is a reporter for The San Diego Union-Tribune