San Jose police on Wednesday announced the arrest of six men who allegedly committed dozens of robberies, burglaries and thefts since last year, including many that targeted people of Asian descent.
The suspects have been charged for more than 70 cases that occurred between October 2020 and this September, and hate crime enhancements have been added because the men allegedly frequently targeted Asian females who ended up injured in robberies, police said.
Surveillance video from cameras in Little Saigon in San Jose captured one of the 70 robberies allegedly by a group of six men targeting Asian women.
The six have been identified as Anthony Robinson, 24, of Stockton; Cameron Moody, 27, of East Palo Alto; Derje Blanks, 23, of San Jose; Hassani Ramsey, 24, of Oakland; Clarence Jackson, 21, of East Palo Alto; and Malik Short, 21, of Tracy, according to police.
Many firearms, including a ghost gun, were also recovered as part of the investigation.
The daughter of one of the victims who asked not to be identified told NBC Bay Area her mother was robbed in a similar way as seen in the surveillance video.
"They blocked her car from behind and they jumped out, snatched her bag...That’s what my mom was able to relate to me," the woman said. "It’s something that is still very traumatizing to her. She still doesn’t go to the market alone."
San Jose Police Chief Anthony Mata, Santa Clara County District Attorney Jeff Rosen and Councilmember Maya Esparza met with Little Saigon business owners informing the group of the arrests, and assuring the felony robbery charges will include hate crime enhancements.
"It also affects people in the Asian American community who were not targeted because it makes them fear they might be next," DA Rosen said.
San Jose Police Capt. Brian Shan said that "there is no doubt that these suspects believed that they could prey on these victims because of their ethnicity, because of their gender.”
That's why the family of the victim is grateful for the arrest, but remains wary.
"You think your mom will want to go shopping yet?," NBC Bay Area's Robert Handa asked. "I think she always wants to go shopping, but I don't think she'll be going alone," the woman responded.
Three of the suspects have posted bail and are out of jail. Police say officer foot patrols will remain in Little Saigon indefinitely.