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Suspected North Park bank robber arrested, search of vehicle shuts down I-5 in Chula Vista

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Posted at 6:41 AM, Aug 08, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-08 09:41:31-04

SAN DIEGO (CNS) - A man suspected of robbing a North Park bank late Wednesday afternoon while claiming to have a bomb was arrested a short time later on Interstate 5 in Chula Vista, prompting a partial closure of the freeway while police checked his car for weapons.

The holdup occurred at a US Bank branch office in the 3200 block of University Avenue about 4:45 p.m., according to San Diego police.

10News learned the suspected robber entered the branch and demanded cash from a teller. Police said the suspect, later identified as 32-year-old Gustavo Torres, told bank employees that he was armed with explosives.

After obtaining an unknown amount of cash, Torres drove off in a black SUV.

No one was injured during the holdup.

RELATED: I-5 shut down due to robbery investigation, explosives search

Officers responding to the crime caught up with the suspect a short time later and tailed him as he drove to the south on I-5, Officer Robert Heims said.

Shortly after 5 p.m., the suspect pulled to a stop in the middle of the freeway near Palomar Street. Police shut down the southbound lanes as they arrested Torres.

Police then brought in a dog to check the suspect's getaway vehicle. About 5:35 p.m., after conducting a sweep of the car, officers gave an all-clear for the interstate to be reopened.