ATASCADERO — On Thursday, Sept. 7, the Atascadero Police Department responded to a reported robbery incident in the vicinity of the 6700 block of El Camino Real. The victim recounted an encounter with a Hispanic male teen who attempted to abscond with his bicycle while holding a handgun.
The teen suspect made an escape on foot, ultimately disappearing into the creek area near the pedestrian tunnel, heading in the direction of Atascadero High School. As a precautionary measure, both North County Christian School and Atascadero High School were placed on lockdown to ensure the safety of students and staff.
Determined to apprehend the suspect, law enforcement officers immediately initiated an extensive search operation in the creek area. Aerial support was provided by a helicopter from the California Highway Patrol to aid in the search efforts.
During the search, a subject fitting the description of the teen suspect leaped over a fence in the 6400 block of Nacimiento Avenue directly in front of a vigilant officer. The suspect was promptly detained and subsequently positively identified by the victim as the perpetrator of the robbery.
In a bid to locate any discarded firearms in the vicinity, a K-9 unit from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, specially trained for firearm detection, was summoned to assist in the search. As a result of their efforts, a pellet gun concealed within a black beanie was discovered near a backpack believed to belong to the suspect.
The apprehended teen, a 15-year-old resident of Santa Margarita, was transported and booked into the San Luis Obispo County Juvenile Services Center on charges of robbery. Law enforcement agencies are continuing to investigate the incident.