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Colorado Springs man arrested on suspicion of assault, robbery

A Colorado Springs man is being held in El Paso County Jail after his arrest on charges that he committed a string of robberies in recent weeks. He's also accused of assault on a couple of occasions.

Law enforcement officials say the suspect, 51, used at various times handguns, rocks, knives and lighter fluid in the 13 alleged robberies.

He was arrested early this week and is in jail in lieu of a $100,000 bond.

Police say the man wielded a brick or a rock in more than one robbery to threaten store clerks. In two instances, they say, he sprayed lighter fluid on clerks and then threatened to set them on fire if they didn't allow him to take what he wanted.

Officials say that in more robberies, the suspect used handguns to threaten store employees.

The man was arrested late Monday as police responded to a reported burglary on Alvarado Drive. When officers arrived on the scene, the suspect reportedly fled, but was apprehended soon after.

Law enforcement officials claim the man robbed the following stores:

Arby's on 8th Street
7-Eleven on Delta Drive
Family Dollar on N. Spruce St.
Ruskin Liquors on Airport Road
D&S Liquors on Delta Drive
Clarion Hotel on E. Bijou St.
Coal Train Liquors on W. Uintah St.
Diamond Shamrock on N. Circle Drive
Dollar Tree on S. Academy Blvd.
Conoco on E. Fountain Blvd.

Police say he also attempted several other robberies between mid-April and late May.

As with all other people suspected of crimes, this man has rights that must be protected as he makes his way through our criminal justice system. Unless and until he's proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, he should be considered innocent.

Source: Colorado Springs Gazette, "Police arrest suspected lighter fluid/rock robber," May 29, 2012

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