Men accused in home invasion robbery reportedly gave Redwood City victim chance to call police 

Greed got this suspect arrested, but his on-the-lam accomplice might be going straight to hell.

One of two men who allegedly stormed into a pastor’s home in Redwood City last week and held a gun to a 79-year-old woman’s head was so greedy that he left the woman alone in a bedroom — with a phone — so the pair could scour for more loot.

The suspects even closed the door, which afforded the woman an easy opportunity to call her daughter, who then notified police about noon Feb. 7 that her mother was being robbed at the home in the 900 block of 10th Avenue, San Mateo County District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said.

The call reportedly led to a police manhunt and the lockdown of a nearby elementary school.

Jovanni Aguilar Martinez, 21, of Redwood City was caught near the home with a pillowcase filled with stolen loot, Wagstaffe said. He has pleaded not guilty to charges that he robbed the home, which Wagstaffe identified as the pastor’s residence for The Free Methodist Church in Redwood City. The victim’s relationship to the pastor is unclear.

Martinez was reportedly not the thug who put a gun to the 79-year-old woman’s head. That suspect, described as a man in his late teens or early 20s, got away, as did a young woman who had reportedly helped the two men.

She had briefly showed up at the home, and the 79-year-old recognized the young woman from church, prosecutors said. She reportedly only verified that the woman was alone at the home, because minutes later Martinez and the other man forced their way into the home.

In an interview with KNTV (Ch. 11), the 79-year-old said she was forced onto her grandson’s bed with a gun jammed into her head.

Martinez remains in custody on $100,000 bail. A preliminary hearing in his case is scheduled for Feb. 25.

maldax@sfexaminer.com

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