Howell man arrested amid ties to robberies in Toms River, Brick and Lakewood
Toms River Police say a Howell man who committed robberies in the township, as well as in Lakewood and Brick, has been arrested.
On Thursday March 28 around 1:45 AM police say a man entered the 711 on Route 37 near Oak Ridge Parkway allegedly brandishing a knife and then demanded money before taking off on foot.
It was just a couple hours later at 5:59 am that police say the same man entered the Rite Aid at Route 70 and Whitesville Road and again brandished a knife and demanded money before fleeing on foot.
That weekend on Sunday March 31 around 4:00 PM police responded to a robbery at Anthony’s Liquors on Route 166.
Two males entered the store, one appearing to act as a lookout.
The second male approached the checkout counter and passed a note to the clerk demanding cash.
Although the suspect did not show a weapon, he imitated he had one in his waistband.
The suspects fled the area on foot with an undetermined amount of cash.
The scene was processed for forensic evidence and the note used was recovered and processed for latent fingerprints.
Toms River detectives made contact with detectives from Brick and Lakewood and operated under the belief that recent robberies in their respective towns were related to the three that had occurred in Toms River.
On April 4 the Ocean County Sheriff’s Department was able to positively identify a fingerprint obtained from the note as a match for an individual named Luis Claudio, 35 of Howell.
On April 5 Claudio was located by Lakewood Police in their town and arrested on an unrelated warrant.
He was transported to the Brick Township Police Department where he was interviewed jointly by detectives from all involved agencies.
Claudio was then charged with robbery and weapons offenses.
He was transported to the Ocean County Jail where he was held pending a detention hearing.
"Having a strong working relationship with other agencies made this investigation seemless and move swiftly. We would like to thank Brick Township Police Department, Lakewood Township Police Department, as well as the Ocean County Sheriff’s Crime Scene Investigations Unit and K-9 Unit for working together to apprehend the suspect," Toms River Police said in a statement.
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