SWAT looks for suspect after car burglars brandish gun, police say

Police said they shut down a portion of a West Long Beach neighborhood after a pair of burglars brandished a firearm as they were trying to break into a car Tuesday morning.

Police said two men were in the middle of burglarizing the vehicle around 8:30 a.m. when the car’s owner confronted them and they brandished a gun.

When officers arrived, they were able to arrest one of the suspects, who had a gun on him, LBPD officer Denise Green said. But the other suspect ran.

Officers surrounded the area and called in SWAT officers “due to the nature of the call and firearm recovered,” Green said.

Police shut down several streets in the area near Santa Fe Avenue and Columbia Street, which is next to Stephens Middle School. Officers found the second man and took him into custody around 10:45 a.m.

Police identified the first suspect as 28-year-old Michael Purinton Lemos of Lakewood. He was arrested on suspicion of carrying a concealed weapon, being an ex-felon in possession of a gun and violating his parole.

Police said the second man was 20-year-old Julian Reyes of Long Beach. He was arrested on suspicion of robbery, assault with a deadly weapon, vandalism and obstructing a police officer.

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Jeremiah Dobruck is the breaking news editor for the Long Beach Post. He began his journalism career in 2007 as an intern at Palos Verdes Peninsula News and has worked for The Forum Newsgroup in New York City, the Daily Pilot and the Press-Telegram. He lives in Torrance with his wife, Lindsey, and their two young children.