FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – 8 arrests have been made in connection with a robbery that took place at a hookah lounge in Fresno, according to the Fresno Police Department.

Police say that on November 27, 2022, at about 3:00 a.m. they received a call about a robbery at a hookah lounge in North East Fresno. A group of 15 gang members allegedly forced their way into the business that were heavily armed, claiming their gang affiliation. Once inside they began to violently assault and rob employees and customers.

After an investigation police say they were able to determine that the robbery was committed by two known gang sets in the Fresno community known for their violence. Both cooperated and planned the robbery as they robbed the location right as they were closing and seemed to know where everything was.

With the discovery of the robbery having gang ties, the case was turned over to the M.A.G.E.C. team to further investigate the case. Police say they were able to identify 12 of the 15 gang members that allegedly committed the robbery.

Police say that they needed to be proactive with this case as based on intelligence and statements, they were going to keep planning more robberies and it was important to stop them before they hit any other places.

On January 18 law enforcement was able to obtain 12 different search warrants for various locations across Fresno. In order to successfully conduct this operation, police say it took a lot of teamwork and resources. This included the Fresno Police Department, Department of Homeland Security, FBI, and California Highway Patrol.

During this operation, police say they made eight arrests and recovered four guns including a 223 AR pistol and a semi-automatic shotgun equipt with a switch. Every person arrested had a history of criminal activity.

Detectives, in this case, say that they are asking for the help of the community in locating three of the outstanding suspects. They include:

  • Keontay Perry – 09/27/98
  • Gregory Brinkley – 01/18/00
  • Brian Howard – 09/17/90

Anyone with information can call the Fresno Police Department M.A.G.E.C. Detective Adney at (559) 477-2918 or Detective Hull at (559) 286-9092.

Fresno Police Chief Paco Balderrrama says this is a great example of the cooperative efforts of law enforcement and that the public can expect more of these kinds of operations throughout the year.