PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – Portland police robbery detectives have arrested two people in connection with a takeover style robbery that happened in the Lent’s neighborhood.
Arrest warrants have been issued for 27-year-old Jesus A. Mezick and 33-year-old Jamaar A. Smith.
KOIN 6 News learned law enforcement officials in Los Angeles arrested Mezick around 6 a.m. on July 9 at a bus station. He is being held without bail on a fugitive warrant hold, and is due in court for an extradition hearing on July 25.
Smith was arrested early Thursday morning in the area of SE Reedway and SE 88th Avenue. He was booked into the Multnomah County Detention Center around 12 p.m., and has bail set at $510,000.
The robbery happened July 7 around 2:30 a.m. at the 82nd Street Bar and Grill, which is in the 5000-block of SE 82nd Avenue.
KOIN 6 News has learned two Portland police supervisors assigned to the East Precinct were in the area when the robbery happened. A man ran up to the officers and was screaming that the tavern was being robbed at gunpoint. The sergeants approached the bar but didn’t see anything unusual. As they were watching the tavern, a 9-1-1 call came into dispatchers to report that the bar had in fact been robbed and that the two suspects had fled.
According to law enforcement officials, Smith and Mezick men entered the bar and “forcefully moved individuals around the interior of the establishment.”
Mezick was armed with the knife and Smith armed with the gun, KOIN 6 News confirmed.
An employee told police one of the suspects began pulling and jerking her arm in different directions as he ordered her to open the cash registers.
KOIN 6 news learned one of the bartenders told police one of the suspects, later identified as Mezick, approached her and repeatedly ordered her to open the cash register while holding a fixed fishing-style knife near her stomach.
At least $1,000 was stolen from the bar, officials said.
The other weapon, which was carried by Smith, is described as a “semi-automatic handgun,” officials confirmed.
Police confirmed both Mezick and Smith fled the bar in a getaway vehicle that crashed in the area of SE 112th and SE Boise Street.
Police searched the neighborhood but were not able to immediately find the two suspects so the Special Emergency Response Team was called out to do a more methodical search. Eventually police, using surveillance video, were able to identify Mezick and Smith as their suspects.
Both Mezick and Smith have been charged with robbery, theft and unlawful use of a weapon.
According to court records, Mezick has been convicted of possession of meth, possession of cocaine, theft, being a felon in possession of a restricted weapon, and assault. His criminal record includes convictions in Marion, Multnomah and Clackamas Counties.
Smith has convictions out of Multnomah County for theft and assault.
Smith is scheduled to appear in Multnomah County Circuit Court on Friday afternoon.
Police do not believe Smith and Mezick are connected to several tavern robberies that happened on Monday, July 10.
According to police, the Greeley Avenue Bar, Sandy Hut and the Hilt Bar were all robbed within about a 90 minute timeframe. Meanwhile, Milwaukie Police confirm they are working with detectives in Portland to see if a robbery that happened on July 12 around 1:30 a.m. at Gilmore’s Meadows could be connected.
In that case, three were forced into a cooler and the cooler door was locked shut. The victims later escaped the cooler through a small beverage door. All three were uninjured.
Anyone with information about these incidents is asked to call robbery detectives at 503-823-0405 or Milwaukie Police at 503-786-7500.