ANTIOCH -- An armed robber who struck at a market early Friday morning, then fled from police before crashing his car, was arrested after a brief struggle, police said.
The robbery was reported about 12:54 a.m. Friday at the Bonfare Market, 907 West 10th St. Officers responding to the market saw a vehicle leaving the area, but lost sight of it.
Moments later, police found the vehicle crashed and on fire on Highway 4, just behind the 600 block of West Tregallas Road. Officers set up a perimeter and found the suspect, a 22-year-old Antioch resident, in a yard in the 2700 block of D Street.
At one point, the suspect apparently tried to get away by offering cash for a ride to a passing motorist. Antioch resident Tommy Ly, 22, was headed home from his job at a local movie theater when he saw the burning car on the side of Highway 4.
Ly didn't see any fire trucks, he said, and wanted to see if he should report the wreck, so he exited the freeway and headed up West Tregallas Road, near a post office branch.
"All of a sudden, this guy comes running up out of nowhere and flags me down," Ly said. "He was really frantic and super sweaty."
The man said his car had broken down, and pulled out a "fat wad" of cash, Ly said, offering to pay him for a ride. Ly said no, but the man pleaded with him, then looked up and suddenly took off running again. The man did not show a weapon during their brief interaction, Ly said.
Ly looked up, too -- and saw several Antioch police cars headed straight for him. Officers jumped out of their vehicles and began searching the area, he said. Police were following up on Ly's report Friday afternoon.
The suspect was arrested after a brief struggle and taken to a hospital for treatment of unnamed injuries. Police did not release his identity, but said he would be taken to County Jail in Martinez on suspicion of robbery and assaulting a police officer.