News Release News Release The City of Palo Alto
Communications Department
250 Hamilton Ave
Palo Alto, CA 94301


Subject :

Detectives Arrest Suspects from December Liquor Store Robbery
Contact : Brian Philip, Detective Sergeant, Police    650-329-2413
Amador Valentin Rivera
Palo Alto, CA -- Detectives recently identified and arrested the two suspects responsible for the armed robbery of a Midtown Palo Alto liquor store in December 2012.  The suspects wound up being the same two people arrested by patrol officers on January 5, 2013, for carjacking a woman in the California Avenue business district.

On Saturday, December 29, 2012, at about 7:55 p.m., two suspects robbed the Century Liquors store at 3163 Middlefield Road at gunpoint.  While no one was injured during the robbery, the suspects escaped with cash and about $230 worth of alcohol.

Follow-up investigation by detectives ultimately led to the identification of the two suspects as 18-year-old Amador Valentin Rivera of East Palo Alto and a 16-year-old juvenile who splits his time between residences in Oakland and Menlo Park.

Police had also arrested Rivera and the juvenile on the night of January 5, 2013, after they committed a carjacking using a realistic-looking BB gun in the 100 block of California Avenue.  Alert patrol officers stopped the vehicle as it left the area, arrested two of the three occupants, recovered the BB gun, and returned the car to the uninjured victim.

Rivera has been in custody at the Santa Clara County Main Jail for that carjacking arrest since January 5.  The juvenile, whom police took to the Santa Clara County Juvenile Hall for carjacking on the same night, had subsequently been released from custody.

Detectives arrested the juvenile for one count of robbery (a felony) on the morning of Friday, February 15, 2013, at his school in Oakland.  Police took the juvenile to the Santa Clara County Juvenile Hall.  The Palo Alto Police Department does not release booking photographs of juveniles, nor do we identify them or their schools by name.

Detectives worked with the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office and obtained an arrest warrant charging Rivera with one count of robbery.  Police served the warrant on Rivera while he was still in custody on Monday, February 25, 2013.  The booking photo of Rivera from his original arrest on January 5 is attached to this release.

Detectives are continuing to investigate a series of six street robberies dating back to December 2, five of which have occurred in the downtown area.  Currently, it is not known if Rivera or the juvenile are associated with any of those crimes.  Anyone with information about these incidents can contact our 24-hour dispatch center at 650-329-2413.  Anonymous tips can be e-mailed to or sent via text message or voice mail to 650-383-8984.

Links to the original press releases about the liquor store robbery, the carjacking arrests, and each of the street robberies can be found here: