One of the two East Palo Alto men who was arrested on Monday on suspicion of robbing two pharmacies at gunpoint earlier that day in Livermore has now been linked to a series of other robberies in three more East Bay cities, police said.
Suspects Eric Vargas, 43, and Jesus Aguilar, 23, were arrested on suspicion of robbing a Rite Aid Pharmacy at 968 Murrieta Blvd. at about 10:45 a.m. and another Rite Aid Pharmacy at 1380 North Vasco Road at about 12:01 p.m., according to police.
When officers arrived at the scene they learned that one of the suspects fled in the direction of Leo Croce Elementary School at 5650 Scenic Ave., police said.
Although there was no information leading police to believe the suspect entered the school, they had the school go into lockdown as a precaution. The school was on lockdown for about 30 minutes, police said.
When officers arrived, they were advised that the suspect may have entered a silver SUV and fled the area.
Officers later located and stopped the vehicle and arrested Vargas and Aguilar on suspicion of armed robbery, conspiracy, drugs, and weapons-related charges and enhancements, according to police.
Livermore police investigators confirmed that Aguilar likely committed armed robberies of other pharmacies in other cities and he's been linked so far to three robberies in Fremont which occurred on Feb. 27, March 1 and March 9, authorities said.
Aguilar has also been linked to robberies in Castro Valley and Pleasanton that occurred on Monday, just prior to the two Livermore robberies that day, according to police.
Livermore police said officers have recovered the gun they believe was used in the robberies as well as other evidence from the suspects' vehicle.
They said the case remains under investigation.
Livermore police thanked a community member for providing them with a description of the suspects' vehicle. They said that piece of information was very helpful in quickly apprehending the suspects.