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Matthew Lickona 5 p.m., Dec. 9
A gangster who showed another man a large knife and told him to empty his pockets may have just been checking to see if the other man had any weapons, his attorney suggested in court today.
It sounded more like armed robbery to Judge Robert Kearney, who ordered Jose Reyes held to answer five felony charges, plus gang allegations, in San Diego’s North County Superior Courthouse today, September 3.
Police officer Nicholas Rodelo told the judge he arrested 19-year-old Reyes last month, after there were two different reports of a man robbing persons using a large, black knife.
The first incident allegedly occurred in the parking lot at 2245 East Valley Parkway in Escondido, after 10 p.m. on August 3. A young man named Ivan said he was riding his skateboard when Jose Reyes drew a fixed-blade knife from his waistband and declared “Diablos” and told Ivan to empty his pockets. The young man said he was fearful but didn’t want to give up his property so he hesitated, and then Reyes struck him in the chest with the butt of his knife and repeated his demand. Just then a car pulled up and Reyes fled, the alleged victim told the officer.
Fifteen minutes later, another person reported an assault near 1811 East Grand Avenue. That young man told cops that Jose Reyes put the 8-inch-blade of his knife to his throat and threatened to “cut” him. That robbery victim gave up two dollars and his iPod Touch, he told Escondido police.
Officer Rodelo found a witness who said he recognized the gangster, and that witness directed Escondido Police to the Facebook page of Jose Reyes. With a good photo of a suspect, Escondido police collected Reyes and both alleged robbery victims confirmed his identification during a “curbside line-up,” the officer told the judge.
Jose Reyes, 19, pleads not-guilty to all charges and is next due in court October 1, 2013. His case is flagged for immigration review, according to the San Diego County Sheriff’s website.