Modesto teen arrested in Fresno robbery foiled by armed store owner (video)

The Fresno BeeJuly 3, 2014 

Fresno police have arrested one teenage suspect in the botched robbery of a southeast Fresno jewelry store and are seeking a second juvenile suspect. Both are from Modesto.

Police said the 17-year-old suspect arrested is the boy seen in a surveillance video trying to make a call on a cellphone. He turned himself in to Fresno police on Thursday. His name and photo are being withheld because of his age, police said. He was booked into Fresno County Juvenile Hall on attempted robbery charges.

Fresno police gave the second suspect several hours Thursday to surrender before releasing his name. He was identified as Edgar Yepez, 16, and is considered armed and dangerous, police said.

Officers served three warrants in Modesto on Wednesday night, Fresno police Chief Jerry Dyer said in a news conference Thursday afternoon. Both boys have Modesto gang ties, Dyer said.

Modesto police joined Fresno officers in searches of two homes within blocks of each other in south Modesto. The homes are in the heart of Modesto's only gang injunction zone, which targets the Deep South Side Norteños.

The zones have been used in the San Joaquin Valley since 2003. They fight gang activity by declaring a gang to be a public nuisance within a certain area, and those served papers can't meet in public and will be arrested if they do.

Evidence from the robbery was recovered as a result of the search warrants, Fresno police said.

The attempted armed robbery Tuesday afternoon at Joyeria Marlenes jewelry store in southeast Fresno was foiled when the store owner chased away the boys with a shotgun.

The store is on the corner of Kings Canyon Road and Clovis Avenue.

One of the suspects pointed a handgun at a clerk. The store owner was in the back office with his daughter and newborn grandchild when he heard his cousin saying they were being robbed, police said. He came out of the office armed with a shotgun with a "bullpup" stock. Nobody was injured and nothing was stolen.

Anyone who has information about the whereabouts of Edgar Yepez is asked to contact Fresno Police Department Street Violence Section Robbery detective Brandi Phebus at (559) 621-2427 or call Crime Stoppers at (559) 498-STOP. Those who provide information will remain anonymous and may receive a reward of up to $1,000.

The Modesto Bee's Erin Tracy contributed to this report. The reporters can be reached at (559) 441-6330, or

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