2 robbery suspects arrested after a hosage standoff at a RadioShack are linked to 3 other holdups
Men suspected in cellphone store robbery spree
Last Updated: 405 days ago
DENVER - Police believe that two robbery suspects arrested after a six-hour hostage standoff at a Denver RadioShack store in September may be connected to three other armed robberies in metro Denver, according to court records.
Michael Annan, 23, and Taveuan Williams, 19, were arrested Sept. 7 after Denver police said they held a RadioShack manager at gunpoint for hours when officers trapped them during an attempted robbery of the store at 5305 E. Colfax Avenue.
Police said the suspects fired at officers during the standoff that ended peacefully after police negotiators persuaded the men to drop their guns.
Police now say the two men appear to be connected to three other cellphone store robberies, based on photo lineup identifications of the suspects by witnesses in two stickups, according to a search warrant affidavit that Denver detectives filed to gather information from Williams' and Annan's cellphones.
Among the information investigators are seeking is the location of cell towers used by the suspects' cellphones between Aug. 22 and Sept. 7, when four robberies -- including the RadioShack standoff -- occurred.
The cell tower information could help police pinpoint where Willams and Annan were doing the robberies by tracking their cellphone location.
During questioning by police, Williams denied participating in any other robberies and Annan refused to talk about whether he was involved in other robberies, according to the affidavit.
The search warrant asks Cricket Wireless to provide a list of calls to and from the mens' cellphones during the time period of the robberies. Police technicians are also scouring the cellphones for data -- including text messages and photos -- that could provide incriminating evidence against the suspects or identify possible witnesses, according the search warrant affidavit filed in Denver court.
During the RadioShack standoff, friends told 7NEWS that Williams was posting messages on Facebook asking friends to call him and say their last goodbyes.
"Swear to God, I'm gonna die," one Facebook post said.
Police investigators reviewing surveillance video from the other robberies said the two gunmen in those crimes have similar physical descriptions to Williams and Annan and had similar clothing and handguns like those worn and used by Williams and Annan in the RadioShack standoff, the affidavit said.
The gunmen in the other robberies wore red bandanas over the faces like the ones that police say Williams and Annan wore in the failed RadioShack robbery, according to court records.
Here are details off the other robberies cited by Denver investigators in the affidavit:
At 11:25 a.m. on Aug. 22, two gunman robbed a Cricket cellphone store at 2787 N. Colorado Blvd. in Denver. A woman clerk, who was alone in the store, said two black men in their early 20s came in dressed all in black with red bandanas over their faces. They brandished black automatic handguns and ordered the woman to lie on the floor and not look at them.
"I think I'm scarred for life now," said the clerk, who did not want to be identified. "I was too afraid to go back to work there."
The robbers emptied the cash register into a bag and along with 60 to 75 cellphones, making off with more than $9,000 in phones and cash, the clerk told police.
At 11:40 p.m. on Aug. 23, two black men waving handguns robbed an AT&T Wireless phone store at 5990 S. University Blvd. in Greenwood Village. They locked employees in a back room before stealing cellphones, the Denver police search warrant affidavit said.
Greenwood Village police told Denver investigators they had a witness who identified Annan and Williams as the robbers, and they were filing a robbery case against the men, the affidavit said.
On Aug. 29, two black men, brandishing guns entered a Cricket cellphone store at 1550 S. Colorado Blvd..
A store video showed the men wore red bandanas over their faces and black hooded jackets like those Annan, and Williams wore in the RadioShack robbery, police said. An investigator said Annan's and Williams' physical description was similar to the gunmen in the other three robberies.
The investigator also noted that the robbers locked the front door of the Cricket store during the Aug. 29 holdup, just as Williams and Annan allegedly did in the RadioShack robbery.
One robber took an employee to a back room and ordered her to open a safe. The other ordered the manager to open the cash register.
One robber said, "He did not want to hurt anyone and was doing it just to feed his sons and family," the affidavit said. He apologized to the store manager, took her backpack, filled it with cellphones and the robbers ran out the back door.
This is similar to the RadioShack standoff, where the store manager held hostage told police the two would-be robbers alternated between apologizing to him and holding a gun to his head, according to court records.
Alexyss Papi was one of the people held by a gunman during the Aug. 29 Cricket store robbery. She identified Michael Annan from a photo lineup as the robber who watched her and other customers, the affidavit said.
Annan was wearing the bandana mask, but Papi said she could identify him because he was not wearing sunglasses -- like the other robber was, according to the affidavit.
"I looked at his eyes most of the time he was there," said Papi. "They were the exact same as the eyes in the intake picture."
Williams and Annan remain in Denver jail. Both men face multiple felony charges, including attempted murder, kidnapping, aggravated robbery and assault on a peace officer with a weapon.
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