Valero robber linked to string of Gardere burglaries
BATON ROUGE - Police have apprehended the man suspected in the attempted armed robbery of a Valero gas station on Bluebonnet Blvd Friday morning.
According to the East Baton Rouge Sheriff's Office, Joshua J. Darson, 28, was charged with attempted armed robbery and aggravated assault on a Peace Officer with a firearm and resisting an Officer.
On Friday morning around 5 a.m., EBRSO responded to an alarm for an attempted armed robbery at 9990 Bluebonnet. Deputies open fire on the suspect after they say he turned a gun from store clerks onto them.
The suspect fled the gas station on foot. Deputies set up the perimeter in the area to search for the suspect, but could not locate him, according to EBRSO.
Detectives located a hoodie and ace bandage in the area where the suspect fled. Those items fit the description of the suspect given by clerks, and matched surveillance video of the suspect, EBRSO said.
Arrest records also link Darson two other burglaries in the Gardere area, one just days after the Valero gas station incident.
Just before 5 a.m. Saturday, deputies responded to a glass break alarm at the Metro PCS store. At the scene, deputies learned that the front glass window was shattered with a tire iron and cash, phone cases and Bluetooth headsets were stolen.
It was also known that on Jan. 19, the Wing Shack located on Burbank Drive near Gardere Lane was also burglarized. Deputies discovered that a side window had been smashed and a burglar wearing one dark glove and one light glove.
Detectives working the gas station robbery noted that the Metro PCS burglar shared similar physical attributes and was wearing the same dark and light gloves as the Valero armed robber and Wing Shack robber.
The Louisiana State Police crime lab used DNA on the gray hoodie and bandage to link the items to Darson. Detectives obtained a warrant for Darson and apprehended him near his home this evening around 7:45 p.m.
Deputies recovered several Bluetooth headsets, cell phone cases with the Metro PCS packaging and khaki pants with blood on them. Investigators also found an empty cash register till outside the apartment hidden in bushes. In the ditch apartment, investigators also found cash register drawers consistent with the ones taken from the Metro PCS store.
A female inside the home told deputies that one morning she woke up and found Darson with several Bluetooth headsets and counting a large sum of money.
Darson was also charged with two felony counts of simple burglary. He will be booked into parish prison on the aforementioned charges.