Early Wednesday morning, Fort Pierce Police Officers and St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Deputies combined forces to arrest a 19-year-old armed robber.
“Our two law enforcement agencies work together on a daily basis,” said Sheriff Ken J. Mascara, and the arrest of Victor J. Cristales is the latest example of how that teamwork pays off. A violent criminal is now in jail. The loaded gun he used in the robbery was taken off the streets.”
The Sheriff continued: “We continue to focus our resources in high crime areas where gun violence has occurred. This arrest gets a 19-year-old armed subject out of our community, I hope for a very long time.”
Cristales, of Fort Pierce, was jailed under $68,250, charged with robbery with a firearm, armed burglary, carrying a concealed firearm and resisting an officer with violence.
The victim, who lives in the 1100 block of Pine Avenue, Fort Pierce, went into his garage to turn off a light and saw Cristales standing in the shadows and pointing a gun at him. The gun was later identified as a .380-caliber semi-automatic pistol.
Cristales ran away with the victim’s AK-47 assault rifle, keys to the victim’s car and the victim’s PS-4 video gaming station.
Fort Pierce police and St. Lucie County deputies established a perimeter around the victim’s home and surrounding area. Two K-9 teams tracked the suspect: Fort Pierce Police Officer Ryan Moore and his K-9 partner Lotto, and Deputy Marc Geisler and his K-9 partner Jax., Geisler saw the suspect flee eastbound through a yard on Cortez. K-9 Jax apprehended Cristales near 25th Street.
Deputy Shawn Masters and his K-9 partner Gunnar conducted a secondary article search of the area and found all of the victim’s stolen property.
Fort Pierce Police Officer Stephen Griffith took Cristales into custody and recovered his pistol.