The armed man who allegedly robbed a Palo Alto resident walking a dog Tuesday night, Feb. 14, was likely responsible for an attempted armed robbery that took place a half hour later in Menlo Park, police said Wednesday.
The first robbery occurred at about 8:15 p.m. in the 200 block of Walter Hays Drive in Palo Alto, near Stanley Way. Police said the robber walked up to the victim, who was walking a dog, shined a flashlight into his eyes and pointed a handgun at him. The robber then demanded the victim's wallet and ordered him to empty his pockets and drop everything on the ground, police said. He then allegedly told the victim to turn around and walk away. The victim complied with all demands and was not physically harmed.
Police said the robber fled the scene with some of the victim's property. A vehicle was heard speeding away from the scene, police said. The robber was described as a black male in his 20s and about 5 feet 10 inches tall.
About 30 minutes after the Walter Hays Drive robbery, Menlo Park police received a report of an attempted armed robbery that took place in the 400 block of Laurel Avenue, near Gilbert Avenue. The would-be robber in that incident allegedly approached a woman in her 50s, pointed a handgun at her and demanded her wallet.
Police said the victim didn't have any property on her. The man then got into the passenger side of a dark-colored van that was waiting for him. The van drove west on Laurel Avenue. The victim was not injured, police said.
Detectives from Palo Alto and Menlo Park are working together to investigate the two robbery incidents.
Palo Alto police ask anyone with information about the two incidents to call 650-329-2413 or send anonymous tips by e-mail to email@example.com or by text messages to 650-383-8984.