Three people arrested in weekend robberies

Three people have been arrested in a string of robberies reported recently in Merced.

Merced police said the suspects were taken into custody during a vehicle stop early Sunday morning. They have been identified as Juan C. Delfin, 18, Jose R. Vasquez, 18, and a 16-year-old juvenile, according to a department news release.

All of the robberies happened within a 30-minute time frame at different Merced locations Sunday, according to police. The three victims all reported being robbed of personal items and assaulted.

The first robbery was reported at 2:26 a.m., the second at 2:42 a.m. and the third at 2:51 a.m.

In two of the robberies, the victims described the suspect vehicle as a white minivan. Sgt. Jay Struble was in the area of Eighth and T streets Sunday morning when he spotted a van that matched the description.

Struble stopped the vehicle and noticed three people inside. The occupants had blood on their clothing, and police noticed the suspects had items that matched those taken from the victims.

The three suspects were arrested. Delfin and Vasquez were booked into Merced County Jail, where they remain in lieu of $400,000 bail. The 16-year-old was booked into juvenile hall.

Police said all three suspects are from the Atwater area and are not documented gang members with Merced police. Officers will conduct a follow-up investigation to determine whether the suspects are connected with other robberies in the area.