Two young men were arrested and charged with robbery after allegedly assaulting and stealing from a group of teens at Nation’s Giant Hamburgers in El Cerrito over the weekend, a police lieutenant said. Around 5:40 a.m. Sunday, the two suspects approached a group of six teenage boys who were eating at the 24-hour restaurant, located at 6060 Central Ave., and started making comments about the teens’ race, El Cerrito police Lt. Paul Keith said.
All of the teens were white. The group left the restaurant and headed to the parking lot, where the suspects confronted them again, Keith said. The suspects threatened the victims and demanded that they hand over their wallets, he said. One of the victims resisted, and the suspects began slapping and punching him, which led to a fistfight between the suspects and at least two of the victims, Keith said.
The suspects then made off with the victims’ wallets but were found by police a short time later. Officers apprehended the suspects, identified as 19-year-old Muiruri Kamurua and Gerson Alexis Dias, 18, both from Albany, according to police. Both were arrested on suspicion of robbery and for an alleged hate crime since investigators believed that they committed the crime partially because of the victims’ perceived race, according to police. Kamurua and Dias were both charged with multiple counts of second-degree robbery, according to the Contra Costa County District Attorney’s Office.
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