Suspect arrested for attempted armed robbery
On Saturday at approximately 1:40 p.m. Paso Robles Police Department officers were dispatched to the area of the ATM at the Rabobank in the 800 block of Spring Street after receiving a report of an attempted armed robbery, according to a police report.
The adult female victim reported she was completing a transaction at the walk up ATM accompanied by her 8 year old grandson when this incident occurred. The seventy-two year old victim reported she was confronted by an armed suspect who demanded she turn over her cell phone.
The victim told the suspect she did not have a cell phone and the suspect ran to his vehicle. The victim then fled to her vehicle with her grandson, but when she attempted to drive away the suspect blocked her in using his vehicle. The two vehicles collided and the victim called 9-1-1 to report the event. She then tried to drive away again, and the suspect used his vehicle to block her in a second time. The suspect then drove away for reasons unknown and fled southbound on Spring Street.
At approximately the same time, the police received reports of a suspicious subject in the 500 block of Spring Street. This subject and his vehicle matched the description of the suspect provided by the victim in the attempted armed robbery. This subject had reportedly broken out a window of a parked vehicle and also acted erratically inside a check cashing business before
leaving in his vehicle.
Based on descriptions of the suspect and vehicle provided by the victim and other reporting parties, the suspect was located by officers driving northbound on Spring Street at 10th Street. The vehicle was stopped on 12th Street and the suspect was detained without incident. A loaded handgun was located inside the vehicle, along with a controlled substance, police report. There were no other occupants in the vehicle.
The victim positively identified the suspect as the person who had attempted to rob her at gunpoint. This suspect was identified as 28-year-old Santa Maria resident Mario Alejandro Valenciavalencia. He was arrested without incident and later booked into the San Luis Obispo County Jail for the following charges: attempted armed robbery, false imprisonment, elder abuse, child endangerment, vandalism, carrying a loaded firearm in a vehicle, possession of a controlled substance, and possession of a controlled substance while in possession of a firearm.
Neither of the victims was injured during this event.
The investigation into this crime is ongoing. Persons with information about this crime are encouraged to contact the police with information. Those wishing to remain anonymous who have information about this crime, or other crimes, are encouraged to call Crime Stoppers 24-hour hotline at 549-STOP or by texting “SLOTIPS plus your message” to CRIMES (274637).