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The original item was published from 10/3/2019 3:18:46 PM to 10/18/2019 12:00:01 AM.

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Public Safety

Posted on: October 3, 2019

[ARCHIVED] Armed Robbery Suspect Arrested after Crashing Stolen Vehicle

Tomas Brown Arrest mug

Police arrested a man suspected of stealing a car at knifepoint from an employee of IHOP early Thursday morning.

Tomas A. Brown, 25 of Vado, N.M., is charged with one count of armed robbery. The charge is a second-degree felony.

The incident occurred about 6:20 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 3, near the IHOP restaurant at 351 E. University Ave. Las Cruces police investigators learned that an employee of the IHOP went outside and started his vehicle. A knife-wielding man approached the employee, grabbed the employee’s arm and held a knife to the victim’s chest. The suspect then entered the employee’s silver Volvo and drove out of the parking lot.

The victim called 911 and watched as the suspect exited the vehicle. The Volvo kept rolling and crossed University Avenue before crashing into a ditch near College Drive. The suspect, later identified as Brown, ran east on University Avenue before he was apprehended by officers from the New Mexico State University Police Department.

Las Cruces police investigators later learned that Brown was seen looking into other vehicles earlier in the morning. Investigators also learned that Brown had entered the IHOP, just prior to the armed robbery, and asked to speak with a friend who works there. The friend was not there at the time.

Brown was booked into the Dona Ana County Detention Center where he’s initially being held without bond.

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