Mar 19, 2014 10:02 PM

Tucson Police arrest suspect accused of pepper spraying bike shop owner

TUCSON - The man wanted for stealing a bike from a shop and pepper spraying its owner has been arrested.

Robert Todd, 52, was arrested in a midtown apartment complex Wednesday. A tipster had recognized him from media coverage and called police.

Todd was booked into Pima County Jail on armed robbery and narcotic possession charges.

Here's the story originally reported on Feb. 24:

Pepper spray used to steal $3,000 bicycle

TUCSON - A Tucson bicycle shop was robbed in broad day light and the owner was pepper sprayed. The whole thing was caught on camera.

It happened last Thursday near Tanque Verde and Grant Road. The owner of the shop says, he was robbed while giving a bicycle demonstration in the parking lot.

"We're coming in just through the alcove, he's following me on a test ride," describes Karl Schindler, co-owner of Pro Bike Tucson while looking at surveillance footage.

Last Thursday, the customer took him for a ride. "This is a $2,200 bike, but he insisted on looking at a carbon bike, which is a $3,000 retail," Schindler said.

He says the man was a walk-up customer.

"I know he didn't have a vehicle, so at that point the first flag went up, that possibly something was going to happen. I figured, Stupidly, I figured if he was going to steal the bike I could tackle him," Schindler said.

Midway through the test ride, Schindler bent down to demonstrate the tires and was pepper sprayed. He tried chasing him, "I rolled into the store, threw my bike down, and I yelled to the guys in the shop to go get him."

They never did find him. Schindler believes the man had a get-a-way partner waiting.

The suspect is described at 5'10 about 220 pounds, with a slight Hispanic accent. He was last seen wearing an all black Diamondbacks ball cap and a T-shirt with Istanbul written on it.

"Quite frankly the bicycle is the least of our concern. We really want to catch this guy," says Schindler, "this kind of thing happening in Tucson is just insane."

Tucson Police are investigating. If you have any information that could help call 911 or 88-CRIME.


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