LA 10 Freeway heist: Intentional crash turned robbery sparks safety concerns


LOS ANGELES (KABC) — Questions remain days after a brazen daytime robbery carried out by four masked thieves who may have intentionally crashed into a driver on the 10 Freeway in Los Angeles.

Footage shot by a witness shows the suspects — each wearing dark clothing and hooded sweatshirts — exiting a minivan and running toward a wrecked and smoking car on the right shoulder. The driver of the car is seen kneeling with both hands in the air.

The robbers appear to ransack the victim’s car as a man standing nearby appears to record the crime on his cellphone.

The theft happened shortly before 1:30 p.m. Tuesday after the driver of a black Dodge Caravan “intentionally crashed” into a black Alfa Romeo sedan on the eastbound 10 Freeway near Arlington Avenue, according to the California Highway Patrol.

CHP Officer Roberto Gomez said what caught people’s attention was when the incident happened: in the middle of the afternoon.

RELATED: Video shows thieves robbing driver on freeway after South LA crash

Gomez said crimes like what happened on Tuesday are extremely rare on freeways, but it’s important to know what to do in similar situations. He said people should not confront assailants.

During the freeway robbery, witnesses were seen recording what was going on. One witness recorded video just steps away from the suspects.

Authorities said the suspects were armed with a hammer and crowbar.

“It’s the safety, right? It could have definitely gone a different way,” Gomez said.

“Be safe in your own vehicle as well,” he added. “That’s why we tell the public to keep those doors locked, and of course, just be aware of your surroundings.”

CHP investigators aren’t releasing much information about the robbery, like what, if anything, was stolen from the victim’s car. They did say that the bandits escaped in a white Chevrolet Malibu and remain at large.

“I don’t have anything further regarding it due to the fact that we don’t want to jeopardize the investigation,” Gomez said.

One witness, who didn’t want to be identified, shot video of the incident and talked to Eyewitness News. He said the incident seemed like a targeted robbery, and that the attackers had been chasing the black car for a while.

“It seems they knew what he had in his car. I felt really bad for him. I thought it was over for him. He did the right thing. He put his hands up, he let them take what they took,” the witness said. “That’s the safest way he could’ve done it.”

No one was hurt in the robbery.

A Ford Mustang was also struck during the incident.

It’s unknown if there’s a connection between the suspects and the victim.

CHP continues to investigate.

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