A trio of robbers held up a middle-schooler and threatened a person who tried to help during an armed stick-up Wednesday on an Elk Grove street.
The 14-year-old was walking home from Toby Johnson Middle School near Lotus Pond Way and McLean Drive about 3:25 p.m. when he was confronted by three other teens, according to police. One of the teens, estimated to be about 17 years old, pulled out a handgun and demanded the 14-year-old’s personal property.
The 14-year-old complied with their demands. While the robbers were walking away, a witness to the holdup told the trio to return the stolen property, according to Elk Grove police.
In a silent reply, the armed robber lifted up his shirt and revealed the handle of a handgun to the witness. The witness backed away as the three teens ran eastbound on McLean Drive.
The armed robber was described as a skinny Latino teen, about 5 feet 9. He wore a black baseball cap with an orange logo, a dark blue shirt and jeans.
Another robber was described as a heavyset Latino teen about 5 feet 8. He wore a gray sweatshirt and sweatpants. No description was available for the third robber.
Elk Grove Unified School District spokeswoman Xanthi Pinkerton said a notice about the robbery was sent Wednesday to parents at Toby Johnson Middle School and to other area schools.
The notice from Toby Johnson Principal Patrick McDougall read in part, “The victim was a Toby Johnson Middle School student who was held up at gunpoint. School officials on-site immediately contacted law enforcement, who arrived quickly to assist and attempt to apprehend the suspects. The student was not harmed, but was shaken by the incident.”
Students, staff and parents were encouraged to be watchful.
“If they see something, we want them to say something,” Pinkerton said. She encouraged anyone with information about the robbery to contact the district’s police services.
Omonir Niazi, 13, bikes home from Toby Johnson Middle School when the weather is good. But the robbery will make him think twice, he said.
“It’s crazy,” Niazi, an eighth-grader, said Thursday afternoon. “I’ll just have my mom pick me up.”
Parents like Bertha Ramos expressed shock. She was picking up her eighth-grade daughter.
“The community is so safe, so this was definitely a surprise,” said Ramos, who has had four children attending the middle school.