Police: 2 men arrested, employee 'punched in face several times'
Anchorage Police say they have arrested two men who were tied to multiple crimes around town on Wednesday.
According to a Nixle alert from APD, 19-year-old Deen Smith and 20-year-old Tre’Donnis Washington stole a van and committed several crimes including theft, burglary and assault.
Police say at 5:01 a.m., they were notified of a white Ford passenger van that was stolen from a residence on the 1400 block of East 9th Avenue.
Just before 3 p.m., officers responded to the Northway Mall after a report of a robbery at Fresh Look. According to witnesses, two black males, who were later identified as Smith and Washington, entered the store and left without paying for a necklace. That was when a female employee chased after Smith, attempting to get him to pay for the stolen item.
"Smith pushed the female into a kiosk which caused her to fall and injure herself," APD wrote. "[A] male employee went over to help the female when Washington punched the male several times causing injury to the male victim’s face and hand. At some point during the altercation, the necklace was dropped by Smith and subsequently recovered by the employees."
The mall's security followed Smith and Washington and saw them take off in a white van that police later determined was the one reported stolen early that morning.
Nearly two hours later, a caller reported seeing a white van driving recklessly in south Anchorage, park in the Target parking lot and go inside the store. Officers responded and found the two men in the toy aisle. Smith and Washington were taken into custody without incident.
"During the pat-down search, it was discovered that Washington had stolen a hat from Target and concealed it in his underwear," police said.
Smith was arrested and charged with burglary in the first-degree, criminal mischief in the fifth-degree, theft in the fourth-degree, assault in the fourth-degree and robbery in the second-degree. Washington was also arrested and charged on an existing warrant and additional charges including two counts of theft in the second-degree, burglary in the first-degree, vehicle theft in the first-degree, assault in the fourth-degree and robbery in the second-degree.
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