SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) — A man suspected of stalking victims at grocery stores then assaulting and robbing them at their homes has been arrested.
Thirty-seven-year-old Victor Vera was arrested and is accused of targeting victims at Big Y stores in East Longmeadow and West Springfield.
Springfield Police Sgt. John Delaney says Vera is charged in connection to assault and battery of an 80-year-old man on Gillette Avenue on November 9.
East Longmeadow Police Sgt. Steven Manning says that Vera is the suspect wanted for the robbery of a man inside his own garage on Sunday while he was unloading groceries.
Vera is also accused of following a man from the Big Y on Memorial Ave in West Springfield on Saturday.
Sgt. Manning says police were able to spot Vera on surveillance video following the two victims inside the East Longmeadow Big Y on North Main St.
He adds video also helped them track down the suspect outside the store.
“Knowing what vehicle to look for was completely a result of surveillance cameras from private citizens and private businesses,” said Manning.
Springfield Police Sgt. John Delaney says that Thursday afternoon, his department was alerted by East Longmeadow Police to be on the lookout for a grey Lexus SUV driven by Vera.
The plate came back to an address on Mulberry Street.
Officers went to that house and spoke to the car’s owner, and Delaney notes that that owner said he had loaned that car to Victor Vera, who also has the alias of Victor Tirado.
Delaney adds that officers found the SUV parked in a Six Corners parking lot a short time later, and then saw Vera get into the car.
Vera tried to drive away, but was blocked in by Springfield Police cruisers. Delaney says thats when Vera jumped out and fled on foot, only to be tackled and taken into custody a short time later.
While booking Vera, officers also allegedly found 25 bags of heroin on him.
Vera, who is a fugitive wanted out of Connecticut, was arrested and charged by Springfield Police with being a fugitive from justice, possession of heroin, and operating without a license.
He was arraigned Friday and is being held without right to bail for the fugitive charges. Vera is also facing separate charges from Springfield, West Springfield and East Longmeadow.