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Police Arrest Suspect in May 31 Looting Spree
 

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By Lookout Staff

June 18, 2020 -- Santa Monica police on Thursday announced the arrest of a suspect who took part in the wild looting spree that swept through the city's Downtown area on May 31.

Amanda Toyono Van Duyse, 31, of Los Angeles was arrested Thursday for burglary, grand theft and burglary during an emergency, said Lt. Joseph Cortez, the Police Department spokesman.

Looting suspect Amanda Toyono Van DuyseAmanda Toyono Van Duyse
(Courtesy SMPD)


Van Duyse's arrest came after police served a search warrant in the City of Los Angeles and "located thousands of dollars’ worth of merchandise stolen from Santa Monica businesses," Cortez said.

Van Dusye is being held in jail with a $100,000 bail, he said.

“We are dedicated to bringing those responsible for the crimes committed on May 31st to justice," said Police Chief Cynthia Renaud, "and are working in collaboration with our partner agencies, to locate, arrest and prosecute those who committed acts of violence and theft in our community.”

On June 2, the Santa Monica Police Department partnered with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Los Angeles Police Department, Los Angeles Fire Department and the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office to create the “SAFE LA Task Force.”

The task force was formed to "conduct criminal investigations for significant crimes" committed during the civil unrest, local officials said.

The announcement came one day before Los Angeles District Attorney Jackie Lacey announced charges against 61 suspects engaged in the violence and looting that took place in LA and neighboring communities between June 29 and 31.

Of those suspects, 17 were charged at the Airport Branch Court, which covers some of the western portions of Los Angeles County, including Santa Monica.

The charges included felony looting, burglary and identity theft as well as misdemeanor looting and burglary. Felony looting carries a possible maximum sentence of three years in county jail.

In Santa Monica, a total of 220 businesses were damaged, with 76 stores looted during a spree of violence that swept through the Downtown area unchecked for hours ("Santa Monica Demonstration Turns Violent, Looters Ransack Stores," June 1, 2020).

Chief Renaud has said the demonstrations and looting were "not expected or predicted" ("Police Did Not Expect Looting, Demonstrations Sunday, Chief Says," June 4, 2020).

The SAFE LA Task Force is asking the media, and the public, for their assistance to identify suspects involved in the criminal activities committed May 31. Anyone with pertinent information should call (310)458-8401 or (213) 486-6840.

Tipsters can also submit an online tip, video, or picture to SAFELATIPS@lapd.online.

Those wishing to remain anonymous can call the LA Regional Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (800-222-8477) or go directly to www.lacrimestoppers.org.


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