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Arsonist takes bank robbery plea deal
August 14, 2014, 05:00 AM Daily Journal Staff Report

Hugo Carranza

A 66-year-old man convicted of torching a car at the Daly City Department of Motor Vehicles pleaded no contest to robbing $5,000 from a Redwood City bank two days after his release in the earlier arson case.

Hugo Carranza changed his mind as jury selection was to start and pleaded no contest to felony robbery and admitted the prior felony strike conviction. Prosecutors asked for a six-year prison deal but the judge indicated she would limit the time to four years prison and consider a defense request to discount the earlier strike.

He remains in custody on $50,000 bail pending his Oct. 1 sentencing hearing.

On March 14, a man later identified as Carranza walked into the Bank of America at 700 Jefferson Ave. around 2:10 p.m. and demanded of a teller “Give me $5,000 in a box!”

The teller reported being confused by the request and asked if he wanted to make a withdrawal from his account. The man replied “No, from the bank” and simulated having a gun in his pocket. The teller gave the man the money and triggered the silent alarm which led police to wait for the robber when he exited the bank. All the money was recovered.

Just two days before the robbery, Carranza was released from custody with credit for time served after pleading no contest to arson. In that case, Carranza was angry because he paid fines at DMV after San Francisco police towed his vehicle due to an expired registration but could not get it released. On April 23, 2012, he filled a bottle with oil or gas, randomly selected what he thought was an employee’s vehicle and poured the liquid over two tires before lighting them on fire. The 2008 Cadillac Escalade was scorched and the flames also damaged a Honda in an adjacent space.

Carranza was committed to a state hospital for several months after his arrest before being found fit for prosecution.



Tags: carranza, after, before, teller, contest,

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