Watch CBS News

Santa Rosa Safeway armed robbery suspects captured after high-speed pursuit

PIX Now -- Friday morning headlines from the KPIX newsroom
PIX Now -- Friday morning headlines from the KPIX newsroom 08:28

SANTA ROSA -- Three suspects were in custody after a Thursday night armed robbery at a Santa Rosa Safeway store ended with their arrest after a high-speed freeway pursuit.

Santa Rosa police said 21-year-old James Edward Vines, 23-year-old Ettievy Coats and 23-year-old Gregory Garcia were booked into jail on robbery, evasion and firearm counts.

Police and CHP officers surround robbery suspects in a disabled vehicle on U.S. Highway 101 in Santa Rosa following a chase, March 30, 2023.  Santa Rosa Police Department

According to investigators, officers responded to the Safeway store at 2785 Yulupa Ave. at around 8:10 p.m. for a robbery that had just occurred.

Witnesses told police that three black male adults dressed in ski masks had entered the store. They then stole several baskets full of merchandise totaling over $1,000 before exiting out towards a vehicle in the parking lot.

When confronted by a clerk outside, the suspects were reported to have brandished black handguns and made threats to shoot the clerk before fleeing in the vehicle. 

Responding officers located a vehicle matching the description entering onto southbound Highway 101 from the Highway 12 interchange. 

The black sedan accelerated quickly away from the officer and a vehicle pursuit ensued. The chase continued southbound on Highway 101 for several miles, reaching speeds over 100 mph.

 A request was made for allied agencies to assist with the chase, which continued past the cities of Rohnert Park and Petaluma. At one point during the pursuit, occupants discarded a backpack out the passenger side window onto the roadway. The backpack was later recovered and contained a black, 40 caliber Glock handgun with a 30-round magazine and ammunition inside.

As the chase continued toward the county line, spike strips were deployed, disabling both driver side tires on the suspect vehicle. 

The vehicle continued driving on deflated tires before a police intervention technique was performed bringing the vehicle to a complete stop. Three passengers were then taken into custody without further incident. 

Located inside the vehicle, were several items of merchandise from the Safeway store. It is also believed, items recovered form the vehicle were related to other store burglaries in Rohnert Park and Santa Rosa earlier in the evening.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.