A Union City teenager was arrested Wednesday on suspicion of robbing a 12-year-old's Girl Scout cookie stand at gunpoint.
The 17-year-old accused in the Feb. 8 crime was taken into custody at James Logan High School. He confessed to the theft, police said.
Detectives also connected the boy with a separate robbery at his high school. The suspect, whose name will not be released due to his age, has been booked into juvenile hall on two counts of robbery, according to police.
The theft occurred outside a Safeway store at 1790 Decato Road, where a mother and her daughter were selling cookies at a booth, according to police.
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"This is very, very scary. I never thought this would actually happen to me," said Rosa Bennett, the child's mother.
The suspect first approached the pair and asked about buying cookies, but returned soon thereafter — angry. He jumped behind the table, holding a gun, said Bennett, who froze. Her daughter had stepped away to the car to replenish her cookies.
The teen stole an unknown amount of money from the mother and fled, police said.
Police say many officers involved in the investigation have children involved in scouting, so they donated to cover the cost of the robbery. In two hours, they had raised almost $600.
Then, the Union City Police Officers Association purchased all of the girl's remaining boxes of cookies. In all, the officers and the union donated more than $1,100 to the girl.
Sgt. Steve Mendez says officers are glad neither the girl nor her mother was injured in the robbery. He says he's glad officers were able to donate and turn the robbery into a happy story.
But for Bennett, the robbery was a frightening lesson.
"We’re probably going to be way more cautious next time," she admitted. "You never know what’s going to happen."