Friday, August 14, 2015

Suspect jailed in robberies of TV news crews

Bay City News reports that a man suspected of robbing and assaulting two TV news crews covering a homicide at Pier 14 last month has been arrested and jailed.

Michael Anthony Jones, 23, was arrested on July 27 and booked into jail on suspicion of robbing and assaulting the news crews with the help of two accomplices who remain at large.

Jones pleaded innocent on July 30 and remains in jail with bail set at $250,000.

On July 2, a group of broadcast news reporters were robbed at gunpoint of their camera equipment as they were covering the shooting death of San Francisco resident Kathryn Steinle. At about 6 a.m., news crews had gathered on The Embarcadero, in front of Pier 14, when the suspects approached them. The suspects demanded camera equipment from NBC Bay Area and KTVU Fox-2, according to San Francisco police.

Police said there were two armed suspects and a third suspect who acted as a getaway driver. Part of the attack was caught on camera by one of the crews preparing for a live broadcast. One cameraman was struck in the head with a pistol and suffered a laceration to the head. The three other victims were not injured.

The suspects made off with camera equipment valued at over $100,000.

The three suspects fled in a black BMW 7 Series sedan, Gatpandan said. Investigators were able to locate the BMW used in the Pier 14 robbery and on July 27, San Francisco police investigators, with the assistance of the Oakland and Fremont Police Departments, identified Jones as a suspect and located him with the BMW at a Motel 6 in Fremont, police said.

Following a brief foot pursuit, Jones was arrested as he was leaving a room at the motel, police said.

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