D.C. police arrest two in taxi robbery, investigating links to others
By Peter Hermann and Maggie Fazeli Fard,
Detectives searching for suspects in a spate of taxi robberies in Northeast Washington may have gotten a break early Friday when two people were arrested shortly after another holdup.
D.C. police cautioned that though two suspects — one a 15-year-old — were charged in the latest robbery, authorities have not determined whether they were involved in the others.
The three robberies and two attempted robberies all occurred this week in the Edgewood neighborhood, and were committed by people who hailed cabs near Fourth Street and Michigan Avenue.
Police said they do not know whether the robbers were armed. “Some of the cabdrivers felt an object against their neck, but they weren’t sure what it was,” said Cmdr. Andrew Solberg, who heads the 5th Police District.
The arrests came the same day that D.C. police made a public plea for help. Police said Miguel Demonis, 19, of Northeast, was charged with one count of robbery. The juvenile was not identified.
The first robbery was reported about 1:25 a.m. Wednesday at Third Street and Rhode Island Avenue. In that case, police said a passenger robbed the driver of a phone and money and ran toward Bryant Street. Much later Wednesday, about 10:30 p.m., police said, a passenger robbed a cabdriver of a phone and its earpiece in the 600 block of Rhode Island Avenue. The passenger then ran north on the Metropolitan Bike Trail.
On Thursday, about 12:55 a.m., police said a passenger tried to rob a cabdriver at Third and Evarts streets, near the Edgewood playground. But the driver refused to stop, police said, and the passenger jumped out without taking anything.
According to Solberg, another attempt to rob a driver occurred at Fourth and Edgewood streets about 1 p.m. Thursday, and then a robbery occurred two blocks away, at Fourth and Evarts streets, about 11:45 p.m. The two suspects were arrested soon after.
“The midnight officers were out hunting for these guys, so when this robbery happened, they were in the area,” Solberg said. “They spotted people who matched the lookout and tried to stop them. They took off and were found hiding under a stairwell.”