Crime

Atascadero man arrested in Arroyo Grande purse snatchings

Mykel Leo Romo, 21, of Atascadero was arrested Monday, Feb. 18, 2013, on suspicion of robbery and possession of a stolen vehicle. Original story »
Mykel Leo Romo, 21, of Atascadero was arrested Monday, Feb. 18, 2013, on suspicion of robbery and possession of a stolen vehicle. Original story »

An Atascadero man was arrested Monday after allegedly trying to steal an elderly woman's purse in an Arroyo Grande parking lot.

Officers responded Monday to a report of a robbery in progress at the Kmart parking lot on West Branch Street, according to a news release from Arroyo Grande police.

The suspect — identified as Mykel Leo Romo, 21, of Atascadero — had attempted to forcefully steal a purse from an 80-year-old Arroyo Grande woman, police said.

Romo had tried to leave the scene on a motorcycle but was detained by several citizens until police arrived. The motorcycle, which had altered license plates and had been recently painted a different color, was later determined to be stolen, according to police.

After a brief struggle with officers, Romo was arrested and booked into San Luis Obispo County Jail on suspicion of robbery and possession of a stolen vehicle.

The victim suffered minor injuries from being forced to the ground during the attempted robbery.

Romo is also a suspect in a Feb. 15 robbery at the Arroyo Grande Walmart parking lot, where a 65-year-old woman was robbed of her purse.

In both situations, the suspect approached the women and asked for directions to Grand Avenue prior to the robbery, then fled on a Yamaha motorcycle, police said.

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