Police arrest suspected getaway driver in beating case

Daly City police have identified a man suspected of driving a getaway vehicle following a botched Jan. 12 robbery that left a 78-year-old woman in critical condition, police Lt. Jay Morena said today.

Police arrested Juan Carlos Cuellar, 36, an undocumented immigrant from El Salvador, Sunday morning after serving him with a search warrant at his home in the 800 block of Hillside Boulevard in Daly City, Morena said.

Police were tipped off by a witness who claimed Cuellar had confessed to the crime, Morena said.

Cuellar would not tell police the location of the getaway vehicle, a white 2007 Chevrolet extended-cab pickup truck with license plate No. 8K20092, according to Morena.

Police believe the vehicle may contain physical evidence relating to the robbery attempt in which Cuellar's alleged accomplice, 28-year-old Jose Perez-Gonzalez, used a metal bar to pry open a rear sliding door of a

78-year-old woman's Serramonte neighborhood home. Police believe that Perez-Gonzalez, an undocumented immigrant originally from Guadalajara, Mexico, was surprised by the victim and beat her about the face with the pry bar, leaving her “bleeding profusely from massive facial and head trauma,” according to police. The suspect then fled the home through the front door, setting off the silent alarm, and left the scene in the getaway car.

Police responded to the alarm around 3:40 p.m. and found the victim suffering major injuries, police reported. The woman was taken to a local hospital where today she remains in critical condition, a police detective said.

Investigating officers discovered that Perez-Gonzalez apparently called the victim's home before therobbery pretending to be delivering a package, in order to determine what time the victim would be out of the home.

Both men will face a variety of felony offenses, Morena said, which include attempted murder, armed robbery, aggravated assault of an elderly person resulting in great bodily injury and two counts of residential burglary.

However, Cuellar will not speak with detectives and Perez-Gonzalez remains at large.

Police believe that Perez-Gonzalez most recently resided at 971 Sandra Court in South San Francisco, but have searched more of the Bay Area in hopes of finding him.

He is described as 5 feet 6 inches tall, 145 pounds with black hair and brown eyes. He has a black and red “Harley Davidson” motorcycle emblem and black dragon band tattooed on his right arm and may have “Mexico” tattooed in large letters on the inside of his right forearm. In the past he has used the names Antonio Perez, Moses Omar Lopez-Padilla, Jose De Jesus Perez-Gonzalez and Juan Arellano.

A $10,000 reward is being offered by the city of Daly City for anyone with information that leads to the arrest and conviction of Perez-Gonzalez. Anyone with information is asked to call Daly City police at (650) 991-8119.

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