The San Benito County Sheriff’s Office arrested a suspect in an armed robbery from the Tres Pinos Country Store that took place Thursday afternoon.
Sheriff’s deputies arrested local resident Michael Huerta, 25, as the suspect in the case. He’s accused of robbing the store located in the 6800 block of Airline Highway.
According to the sheriff’s statement:
On Thursday, April 19, at approximately 2 p.m., a male subject entered the Tres Pinos Country Store at 6851 Airline Hwy in rural San Benito County. He confronted the lone female clerk and simulated a handgun. The clerk believed she saw a handgun in his possession. The male demanded money from the cash register and the clerk complied. The male fled the scene with an undisclosed amount of cash. The clerk was unharmed.
Deputy Jason Leist responded and took the report for the robbery. He then proceeded to work the case during the remainder of his shift. After obtaining video surveillance footage from a nearby store, and statements from persons in the area, Deputy Leist developed a suspect in the case. He recalled a similar male he and Deputy Russel Brown had stopped a couple weeks prior.
Deputy Leist recovered video footage of the prior stop from his newly issued BodyCam. He was able to take a still image from the video, and used it to secure a positive identification the male was the person responsible for the robbery.
Working with his shift-mates, Deputies Canez, Simpson and later Deputy Mingus, they developed leads as to where the male was located. Through use of ongoing surveillance, and confidential informants, Deputy Leist and his team searched many areas of Hollister and surrounding San Benito County neighborhoods as tips were coming in. The crew was finally able to locate the suspect Michael HUERTA in the area of 1111 San Felipe Rd on Friday, April 20, at approximately 4:00pm.
HUERTA was taken into custody without incident. He would later confess to the robbery while being interviewed by Deputy Leist. He was booked into the San Benito County Jail on the charge of robbery.
Anyone with information on this case is urged to contact the San Benito County Sheriff’s Office on our anonymous tip-line at (831) 636-4084. Or, you can TEXT-A-TIP to 888777 by typing TIP SBCSO followed by your message. To sign up for NIXLE ALERTS text SBCSO to 888777 and follow the prompts.