Suspected bumbling bandits face trial as adults

The Fresno BeeJuly 10, 2014 

Two Modesto teens suspected of bungling the armed robbery of a Fresno jewelry store are being tried as adults in Fresno Superior Court.

Edgar Yepez, 16, and Jesus Antonio Medina, 17, face two felony charges: attempted robbery and assault with a firearm.

After they pleaded not guilty Wednesday, Judge Brian Alvarez ordered them to be held at the Juvenile Justice Center, a county detention center south of Fresno.

Police say the two tried to rob Joyeria Marlenes jewelry storeJune 27 before being chased away by the owner, who had a shotgun.

A store surveillance video released by police shows a man believed to be 6-foot, 215-pound Yepez pointing a handgun at a clerk while a man believed to be 5-foot-7-inch, 130-pound Medina gets on his cellphone and tries to jump over a display counter, but doesn’t clear the hurdle.

Police say the store owner was in the back office with his daughter and newborn grandchild. When he heard the clerk say he was being robbed, the owner came out armed with a shotgun with a “bullpup” stock.

Seeing the shotgun, the robbers backed out the front door and fled. Nobody was injured and nothing was stolen. Tipsters helped police identify the two robbery suspects. Medina turned himself in to police July 3. Yepez was arrested by Modesto police on Saturday.

Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer has said both teens have Modesto gang ties. Court records say Yepez is being held in lieu of $125,000 bail and that Medina’s bail is $35,000. Their next court hearing is set for July 15.

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