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Pittsburg man charged in Fremont chain-snatch robbery

The Alameda County district attorney’s office has charged a Pittsburg man with robbery in connection with one of a recent series of chain-snatch robberies .
Those robberies, some of which drew additional concern due to violence that injured victims, remain under investigation, officials said.
Fremont police say Smith is seen in gas-station surveillance-camera footage from May 6. (Courtesy of Fremont Police Department)
In one robbery about 4:35 p.m. May 6, an unidentified suspect approached a woman pumping gas in the 39900 block of Fremont Boulevard.
When the suspect tried to pull a gold necklace off her neck, the woman tried to hold on, but he pulled her until she fell to the ground. He then hit her in the face, seriously injuring her.
On May 9, detectives with the department’s investigations, street crimes and special investigations units were able to get high-quality video footage from gas-station surveillance cameras, as well as descriptions of the suspect and an associated vehicle, police said Tuesday.

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Soon after, detectives identified Jermaine Smith, 22, of Pittsburg as the suspect. Oakland police had arrested him May 11 on suspicion of felony evasion.
After officers submitted a case to the district attorney’s office May 18 for review, Smith was charged with a single count of felony armed robbery. Smith also has two felony probations, including one for robbery, in Alameda County.
“This was a terrific joint effort by members from several specialty units working together within the Fremont Police Department to identify the suspect responsible for this incident,” Fremont Police Lt. Michael Tegner said in a statement.
“This arrest is good progress in the recent incidents our community has experienced, and our detectives remain committed to investigating these crimes.”
Fremont police released this image Tuesday, May 22, 2018 of a May 6 chain-snatch robbery captured from gas-station surveillance-camera footage. 
Police urge residents to conceal large amounts of money or expensive jewelry, limit use of cellphones or headphones while in public, remain watchful of observers near banks or other retail outlets, and park in well-lit spots when shopping at night. Suspicious people or vehicles, with descriptions if possible, can be reported by calling 510-790-6800, ext. 3, or by calling 911 for crimes in progress.
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Anyone with information in this or similar robberies is asked to call Fremont police Detective Brent Butcher at Bbutcher@fremont.gov or call 510-790-6900, text TIP FREMONTPD followed by a message to 888-777, or go to https://local.nixle.com/tip/alert/6216337 .
Contact George Kelly at 408-859-5180.

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