UPDATED: 23-Year-Old Man Charged with Coachella Cellphone Robbery

City News Service Pristine Villarreal

UPDATE: He pleaded not guilty to the charge and denied the allegations Monday afternoon at the Larson Justice Center in Indio. 

INDIO (CNS) – A 23-year-old man suspected of using a gun to steal a cellphone from a 17-year-old boy in Coachella was charged Monday with robbery.

Miguel Martinez Navarro of Coachella also faces sentence-enhancing allegations of using a firearm and of committing the crime while on bail, according to court records. He was set to be arraigned Monday afternoon at the Larson Justice Center in Indio.

Navarro was arrested Thursday afternoon for his alleged connection to the armed robbery on Jan. 12 in Bagdouma Park, according to Sgt. David Aldrich of the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department.

Aldrich said the boy was at the park when a suspect approached him and demanded his phone at gunpoint.

“The juvenile refused to give his cellphone to the suspect, so the suspect fired one round into the ground,” Aldrich said in a statement. “The juvenile was not injured during the robbery, and no other injuries were reported due to the gun being fired into the ground.”

Deputies from the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department Fugitives and Warrants Enforcement Team subsequently identified Navarro as the robbery suspect and, on Thursday, found him in the 50100 block of Balboa Street, according to Aldrich.

Navarro allegedly ran from deputies as they tried to apprehend him, but he was quickly caught and taken into custody, Aldrich said. He was booked into the John Benoit Detention Center in Indio, where he remains held on $1 million bail.

Copyright 2023, City News Service, Inc.

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