The robbery spree started around 5 p.m. Wednesday."It's bold in and of itself just to do one, but to do so many in such a short period of time," Lt. Jeff Bassett told ABC7 News.
Vallejo police say even they are stunned by the number of armed robberies in their city Wednesday night. "We had about eight armed robberies in the course of about four hours, beginning about 5:00 and ending around 9:15 last night. It looks like about seven of them, there's enough similarities between them that we think it's the same suspects," Bassett said.
One of the most violent robberies happened outside the Seafood City Market where a couple was approached by two men wearing masks, bandanas, and hoodies. One carried a gun -- a blue steel revolver. The woman's purse was stolen. Her 64-year-old husband was pistol whipped when he refused to give up his wallet.
"One of the workers here, he saw it, but he can't do anything to help because there's a gun. He can't help the person," one shopper said.
"Don't lose your life for a few bucks," says Cyrus Charles. He works private security at Vallejo Plaza where Seafood City is located. "We have some guys going around being stupid, out here robbing people for the belongings that they've worked for all their life, and these guys are just little thugs. That's what they are," he said.
Another robbery was in the parking lot of Pep Boys and another was outside the Costco on Plaza Drive. Others victims were apparently followed home from a local Safeway.
Police got a grainy photo of a possible suspect car from a surveillance camera at Costco. Witnesses described a late model Lexus, possibly blue with silver trim.