LODI, N.J. -- Lodi detectives were trying to determine Friday whether a man captured by Ramsey police who said he took $560 at gunpoint from a Route 17 gas station Thursday night is the same one who tried to hold up a Route 46 station less than 90 minutes earlier.
Frank Joseph Diaz, 22, of Mahwah pointed a BB gun that resembled a Glock semi-automatic handgun at a Valero station attendant in Upper Saddle River around 10:40 p.m. Thursday, USR Detective Lt. Edward Kane told Daily Voice.
Ramsey Sgt. Mike Parise and Officer Casey Hines were on patrol when they spotted the fleeing 5-foot-6-inch, 165-pound Diaz as he tried to get to a car parked nearby, Kane said Friday morning.
Police believe he tried but failed to also rob gas stations in Lodi and Ramsey less than three hours earlier, the lieutenant told Daily Voice.
The robber in Lodi "brandished a handgun and demanded money from the attendant" at the Delta station on eastbound Route 46 around 9:20 p.m., Lodi Police Lt. Robert Salerno told Daily Voice.
"When the attendant went to gather the money at the booth outside, [the robber] fled with no proceeds," Salerno said.
Police searched the area with negative results, he said, adding that the investigation was continuing.
Diaz was being held without bail in the Bergen County Jail pending a detention hearing in Central Judicial Processing Court in Hackensack on various robbery and weapons counts, as well as resisting arrest and threatening Ramsey law enforcement officers.
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