PD makes arrest in downtown mugging case

Posted: January 25, 2011 in Uncategorized
Tags: , ,

Lester Padilla (photo courtesy Santa Fe County jail)

Santa Fe police have arrested a man they say is responsible for at least one downtown mugging in the past two weeks and maybe more.

Lester Padilla, 38, 4713 Via Verde Court, was arrested Monday night without and served a warrant charging him with one count of robbery and three counts of aggravated assault.

Police say he had been targeting victims late at night in tourist-heavy areas of downtown Santa Fe.

Capt. Tom Wiggins said over the weekend that Padilla was identified as the suspect in the recent muggings after other recent arrested individuals implicated Padilla.

The three cases police identified over the weekend as the ones they believed Padilla was responsible for are:

  • Two women had their purses, cell phones and jewelry stolen by a man who pulled a gun on them in a parking lot on the northeast side of the Capitol after they left a nearby restaurant on Jan. 11.
  • An Oregon couple had a wallet and purse stolen at gunpoint on the 400 block of West San Francisco Street on Jan. 13.
  • On Jan. 19, a man drew a handgun on a group of people near the corner of West San Francisco and Sandoval streets at 1:22 a.m. and forcefully took a purse from a woman before fleeing.

Padilla’s initial bond is set at $200,000 cash only, according to online jail records. It is unclear when he will be arraigned.

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