FPD seeking additional victims of man suspected of robberies in Fullerton, Irvine


Fullerton Police are asking for help from the public in identifying additional victims of a man arrested in connection to a series of robberies in Fullerton and Irvine.

Joshua Benbrook, 25, of Irvine is suspected of committing two robberies in Irvine on May 23 along with a March 6 armed robbery of a convenience store in the 2700 block of West Orangethorpe Avenue in Fullerton.

Benbrook was arrested outside his home May 24 by Irvine PD and investigators believe he is responsible for a fourth case involving an attempted armed robbery.

This cases are being jointly investigated by the Fullerton, Irvine and University of California, Irvine police departments.

At 6:20 p.m. May 23, a UCI student was walking on campus when approached by the suspect, who indicated he was armed with a gun, police said.

Police said Benbrook ordered the student to walk to an ATM and withdraw cash. He then stole the money and fled the scene on foot.

About 15 minutes later, a motorist whose vehicle broke down was waiting for a tow truck near Culver Drive and University Drive.

Benbrook pulled up behind the disabled vehicle, police said, walked up to the victim and started talking with him.

The suspect then lured the victim back to his vehicle, where he brandished a gun from the glove box and stole the victim’s wallet and cell phone before fleeing in a red sedan.

Benbrook also fled the scene of the Fullerton robbery in a red sedan, police said.

After the Irvine robberies it was determined the Fullerton PD was investigating a similar robbery and the agencies began a collaborative investigation.

The investigation is ongoing to determine whether Benbrook has been involved in any additional incidents.

Anyone who may have been a victim or has information is encouraged to call FPD Det. Veronica Gardea at 714-738-6728, IPD Det. Victoria Hurtado at 949-724-7194 or UCIPD Det. Sgt. Charles Chon at 949-824-5223.