Indio man pleads guilty to Cathedral City gas station robbery

Two years added to ongoing sentence

INDIO, Calif. - A 19-year-old man pleaded guilty Monday to robbing a Cathedral City gas station at knifepoint and was immediately sentenced to two years in prison, adding onto nearly 11 years of prison time he earned last week for other heists in the Coachella Valley.

Anthony Quintana of Indio admitted robbing the Chevron gas station at 22600 Palm Drive on Aug. 8, about two hours before he committed two similar crimes -- and attempted another holdup -- at businesses in Indio. He pleaded guilty to those crimes, and two others, last week.

An arrest warrant declaration states that Quintana entered the Chevron station as Quintana while pointed a "silver folding knife'' at a clerk and demanded money from the register, while co-defendant Angel Fernandez, 18, of Coachella, stood near the entrance, presumably to prevent the clerk from escaping.

After receiving the cash, Quintana threatened the clerk, saying "Don't (expletive) say (expletive), or I'll come back for you,'' the declaration states.

The pair then fled through the back and left in a car driven by an unidentified woman.

Quintana was sentenced to 10 years and eight months behind bars for robbing a Dollar Tree store and trying to hold up Domino's Pizza across the street in Indio within a seven-minute period, along with a robbery that occurred in April and a burglary in July.

An employee working the register at Domino's told police that two young men entered and acted nonchalantly, like "just another pair of customers.'' Quintana then approached the register and displayed "either a gun or knife,'' while Fernandez ``stood by in the background,'' according to a 
declaration in support of an arrest warrant.

Quintana told the worker to "give me the money and no one will get hurt,'' but the employee had trouble opening the register because it was locked. Fernandez then approached Quintana, said "Hurry up, let's go,'' and the men left, the declaration states.

Seven minutes later, the Dollar Tree was robbed at knifepoint of about $300 in cash. The suspects were picked out by clerks via surveillance footage. 

That same footage was shared with Cathedral City police, who reviewed via footage from the Chevron to confirm that the suspects were Quintana and Fernandez, who were wearing the same clothes in both robberies, according to the declaration.

Fernandez was arrested the day after the robberies, but Quintana was on the run until Oct. 3, when he was arrested near Avenue 66 and state Route 86 in Mecca.

Fernandez was not charged in the Chevron robbery but pleaded guilty to the Indio robberies about two weeks after his arrest. He was free on bail for an April 26 Coachella robbery -- to which he also pleaded guilty -- at the time of the Indio crimes.

Fernandez was sentenced to four years for the Coachella robbery and five years for the Indio heist, though those sentences will be served concurrently.

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