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(Al Hartmann | Tribune file photo) In this 2011 photo, taxi drivers queue up for fares south of Salt Lake City International Airport.
SWAT team arrests suspect in Salt Lake City taxi robberies
Crime » Man faces felony charges in armed heists.
First Published Nov 09 2013 02:48 pm • Last Updated Feb 14 2014 11:38 pm

Police on Friday night arrested, again, the man suspected of robbing six Salt Lake City taxi drivers last month.

A SWAT team from Saratoga Springs, with help from the Salt Lake Gang Unit, arrested the suspect after learning he was at a home in the community. Officers received a search warrant to enter the home from a 3rd District Court judge. The 25-year-old man was taken into custody without incident, according to Saratoga Springs police.

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He faces six counts of aggravated robbery, a first-degree felony. His bail is set at $125,000.

According to a probable cause statement, a man dressed in black and wearing a black mask allegedly held up a taxi cab driver at 10:33 p.m. on Oct. 18. The man allegedly opened the taxi’s passenger door and pointed a black handgun at the driver, telling him "don’t move and give me all the money." The driver tossed cash at the man, who gathered up the money and fled.

Fifteen minutes later, another cab driver reported that as he arrived to pick up a fare a man wearing dark clothing with a black scarf over his face opened the passenger door, flashed a handgun and demanded his cash. The man ran away after getting the money.

At 11:07 p.m., a third taxi cab driver contacted police and said a man dressed in black with a scarf over his face approached the cab and demanded to be let in. The driver took off after the man pulled a handgun from his waistband. A fourth taxi cab driver called police 20 minutes later and reported being robbed by a man wearing a mask and armed with a handgun.

Just before midnight, a fifth taxi cab driver contacted police and reported a male passenger had pointed a handgun at him and demanded his money. The passenger jumped out of the taxi after the driver said he’d pushed his emergency button and police were on their way.

A sixth taxi cab driver contacted police at 1:23 a.m. on Oct. 19 and said a male with a black mask partially covering his face had opened his passenger door, pointed a handgun at him and demanded money. The driver took off without handing over his cash.

Shortly after that, Salt Lake police pulled over a vehicle on a tail light violation that had been observed trailing a taxi cab. The driver wore clothing that fit the description of the robbery suspect. Officers found a black baseball hat, dark scarf and dark jacket in the backseat of the vehicle and a Glock 17 handgun and several hundred dollars of cash in the center console. Several victims later stopped at the scene and were able to identify the driver as the man who allegedly robbed or attempted to rob them.

The man, who had an outstanding arrest warrant, was booked into the Salt Lake County Jail but was released Oct. 24. An arrest warrant was issued for him a day later.


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brooke@sltrib.com

Twitter: Brooke4Trib



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