VAN NUYS, Calif. – A 22-year-old man was behind bars Wednesday on suspicion of carrying out a pair of armed robberies in Van Nuys, including one in which he allegedly fired a shot into the floor of a business, injuring a store clerk.
According to the Los Angeles Police Department, police responded around 9:15 p.m. Tuesday to a report of an armed robbery at a store in the 14900 block of Vanowen Street.
The suspect, later identified as Dennis Gomez, entered the store with a loaded 9mm firearm and demanded money from a clerk, police said. During the robbery, the suspect fired a round from the gun into the floor of the store, but the bullet ricocheted and struck the clerk, “causing minor injury,” according to the LAPD.
Gomez left the store and was confronted by a pair of officers who had been flagged down by a resident, police said. Officers chased the suspect on foot and captured him in an alley, recovering a gun in the process, along with multiple rounds of ammunition, according to police.
The two officers involved in the arrest both suffered minor injuries, and one was taken to a hospital and later released, police said.
Detectives subsequently determined that Gomez had allegedly committed another armed robbery around 5 p.m. Tuesday at a business in the 14400 block of Sherman Way, also in Van Nuys. Property stolen during that robbery was allegedly found in Gomez’s possession when he was arrested, police said.
Gomez was booked into the Van Nuys jail on suspicion of robbery, with bail set at $350,000.
Anyone with information about the robberies was asked to contact Van Nuys detectives at 818-374-0040.