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San Mateo police searching for ‘violent’ robbery suspect; accomplice in custody

San Mateo police arrested one of two suspects believed to be responsible for an October robbery and a “vicious and violent” assault on two victims at a laundromat, authorities said.

The other suspect remained at large Thursday, and police were actively seeking public assistance.

Oakland resident Tevita Taunaholo, 25, is wanted on suspicion of robbery, carjacking and aggravated mayhem following the incident, which took place around 6:30 p.m. Oct. 16.

According to police, the arrested suspect, 19, entered Shoreview Laundromat, brandished a gun and ordered a person to leave the building. When the victim refused, the suspect punched  and drhimagged him outside, where Taunaholo helped the arrested suspect beat the victim unconscious, according to SMPD.

Police are searching for Oakland resident Tevita Taunaholo, suspected of robbery, carjacking and assault in connection to an Oct. 14 incident at a San Mateo laundromat. (Courtesy of San Mateo Police Department) San Mateo Police Department

Once the victim was unconscious, police said, the pair stole his belongings, including his car keys. Another victim, unrelated to the first, then arrived at the scene; authorities said the two suspects took that person’s vehicle, as well as that of the first victim.

The two victims were hospitalized; one was discharged but the other remained in the hospital Thursday, according to authorities.

Just a few hours later, police received word that the first victim’s vehicle had been spotted at Southland Mall in Hayward. After the 19-year old suspect entered a bathroom stall, he was detained by Hayward police and arrested by SMPD on suspicion of attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon with great bodily injury, kidnapping, possession of a stolen vehicle, vehicle theft, committing a felony while on release and conspiracy, according to police.

A third suspect was later arrested in Oakland on suspicion of robbery, carjacking and aggravated mayhem. Authorities did not specify how that person was involved in the incident.

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Taunaholo remained at large as of Thursday morning. San Mateo police say that anyone with information as to his whereabouts is encouraged to contact Detective Sergeant Kurt Rodenspiel at 650-522-7662 or by email

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