Law officials secure a crash site on Highway 17 Saturday where a man, suspected of robbing two banks and carjacking the Toyota pickup, shown here, crashed while trying to evade police while armed with a handgun. Photo courtesy of California Highway Patrol

A man was arrested Saturday following a string of felony crimes while reportedly armed with a loaded handgun.

Joyce Blaschke, spokeswoman for Santa Cruz Police, said the rash of crimes began when the suspect, Adam Henry Roberts, 43, reportedly robbed a bank on Ocean Street in Santa Cruz around 11:30am while armed with an unserialized .45-caliber semi-automatic handgun.

As officers were responding to the scene, dispatchers alerted police that Roberts had carjacked a blue Toyota Tacoma pickup that he used to flee the area.

While Santa Cruz Police relayed information to surrounding agencies to be on the lookout for the Toyota, Capitola Police reported that an armed robbery just occurred at a bank on the 1900 block of 41st Avenue in Capitola. Minutes later, Capitola Police officers spotted the carjacked pickup and engaged in a vehicle pursuit of the suspect.

Multiple law enforcement agencies then joined the pursuit of the pickup that charged north along Highway 1 and then onto Highway 17 toward Scotts Valley. 

While Roberts failed to yield to police and continued to speed away from them, he crashed and careened up a dirt embankment where he was taken into custody at 12:10pm. Roberts was taken to a trauma center for non-life-threatening injuries and medical evaluation.

Police then learned that Roberts had attempted to rob a victim of a motorcycle at gunpoint in the parking lot of one of the banks he robbed, but was unsuccessful, Blaschke said. Additionally, while Roberts was being medically treated and cleared, he reportedly attempted to disarm a SCPD officer, which added additional charges. 

Santa Cruz PD and Capitola PD detectives recovered the handgun and stolen cash in the Toyota. Later that day, detectives executed a search warrant at the suspect’s home.

He was booked into Santa Cruz County Jail on the charges of robbery, carjacking and felon in possession of a firearm.

The incident is still under investigation. Anyone with information or who may have witnessed any of these events is asked to call Santa Cruz Police Lt. Forbus at 420.5822 or  email [email protected]. You can also call Capitola Police Captain Sarah Ryan at 475.4242 or email [email protected].

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A staff member wrote, edited or posted this article, which may include information provided by one or more third parties.


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