EL CERRITO -- Two teenagers who police suspect may have terrorized people along the BART path at Eureka Avenue over the past two weeks have been arrested, police said.
The two boys, a 17-year-old from Richmond and a 16-year-old from San Pablo, were caught Thursday by an officer conducting secret surveillance who noticed the two teens and another juvenile chasing somebody on the path, Lt. Steve Bonini said.
They were arrested on suspicion of attempted robbery and conspiracy and taken to Juvenile Hall in Martinez, Bonini said.
Several robberies took place on the path near the same spot over the previous 7-10 days, Bonini said.
Police have not linked the teens to those robberies, but Bonini said they are "putting the puzzle together," on how this attempted robbery may be tied in to the others and that all of the robberies have played out similarly.
"We are contacting the victims" of the earlier crimes, Bonini said. "There's been about three or four robberies over that time period, and they all played out similarly, so we're hopeful" the robberies will stop.
The officer who spotted the teens noticed they appeared to chasing another person and then separated after not being able to catch that person, Bonini said. One of the juveniles then ran past another person and hid behind a BART pillar while the Richmond and San Pablo teens approached that person from behind, looking over their shoulders as they did, police said.
The officer doing surveillance coordinated with other officers to intervene. The third juvenile was released from the scene.
A day earlier, three teens approached a man riding a bike south on the path at Lincoln Avenue and one of them pushed him off the bike. The man's cell phone fell to the ground and the teen grabbed it and fled north on the path.
Rick Hurd covers crime. Contact him Richmond at 510-262-2728 and follow him at Twitter.com/3rdERH.