Guy Tries To Rob Cab Driver At Gunpoint Without Realizing A Cop's Behind Him
A robber tried to mug a cab driver, only to be arrested by the police officer parked behind the car.
On Monday afternoon, Reading, Pennsylvania cab driver Ralph Valletta received a call to pick up a passenger who had requested a ride to the nearby city of Wyomissing, according to the Reading Eagle.
The passenger, 18-year-old Victor Martinez-Herrera, asked Valletta to drive down a narrow alley so he could get his wallet at home, but the driver apparently refused. So, Martinez-Herrera chose to put a gun to Valletta's head while they were stopped at a red light around 4:30 pm, Daily Mail reports.
He demanded all the money Valletta had on him, but the driver reportedly had just $11 in his pocket. Unsatisfied, Martinez-Herrera then ordered Valletta to hand over his wallet and cell phone.
Dashcam video captured the robber saying,
I need it all right now if you don't want to die.
About a minute after Martinez-Herrera made the initial threat, Deputy Sheriff Terry Ely pulled up behind the cab, which seemed to be double-parked. Ely became suspicious when the cab remained still even though the traffic light had turned green. The sheriff said he could also hear some commotion within the cab because he had his windows rolled down.
As Ely slowly approached the cab, he reportedly heard Valletta yell, "Please don't shoot me!" Ely then ordered Martinez-Herrera out of the car and handcuffed him. Martinez-Herrera immediately told the officer, "It's not real, it's not real."
He was apparently referencing his weapon, which was revealed to be a pellet gun that had been altered to look like a real gun.
This was the third time Valletta, a taxi driver for 25 years, was robbed at gunpoint on the job, he said.
His co-workers told him to take the night off, but he went back to work after a short break.
Valletta told the Reading Eagle,
They said, 'You've got to go home.' I said, 'I can't. I've got bills to pay.'
Martinez-Herrera was booked into Berks County Prison, and bail was reportedly set at $100,000.
He was reportedly charged with robbery, making terroristic threats and a weapons-related crime.
Check out the video of the robbery below.
Citations: Berks deputy sheriff thwarts taxi robbery in Reading (Reading Eagle), The moment passenger pulled out a gun to rob his taxi driver.... without realizing a police cruiser had just pulled up behind (Daily Mail)