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Serial robber behind bars

By Bianca Rae, KESQ News Channel 3 Reporter, brae@kesq.com
Published On: Jan 30 2013 12:22:36 PM CST
Updated On: Jan 02 2013 11:18:05 PM CST
RANCHO MIRAGE, Calif. -

Finally a sigh of relief for Burton and Lauren Blaurock, owners of Blaurock Optometry.

"Its just nice to know that they got caught, he got caught. I don't know if it's one, two, three, four, but yeah, I'm happy," Lauren Blaurock said.

Samuel David Lawson, whose picture has not been released, targeted dozens of businesses around the Coachella Valley, his robberies including a local Sonic, Carl's Jr., Pizza Hut, adult bookstores, and even Gucci on El Paseo.

Plice say Lawson began his crime spree back in 2011, and remained on the run until now. Officers arrested him Thursday. He's now facing 47 felonies and one misdemeanor charge.

"Businesses are wondering is it someone they know, someone they've dealt with, someone that's been looking at their business, at least they have closure and don't have to worry about that," Ben Guitron of the Indio Police Department said.

Lawson really narrowed in on one market - eye doctors - robbing over ten. The Slaurocks showed us pictures of damage done to their business -- robbed twice.

"Lots of sunglasses: Raybans, Fendis, Versace, Prada. I could go on and on," Burton Blaurock said.

Burton Blaurock estimated almost $20,000 in losses. Insurance covers that - but there is no bandaid for personal safety -- leaving the Blaurocks braced.  

"We now take all of our sunglasses down at night, so it adds extra time to putting things together in the morning and taking things out at night, because we just don't feel safe," Lauren Blaurock said.

Burton Blaurock said they won't be sleeping better just yet, though.  

"Everybody is innocent until proven guilty. I don't know if he has any accomplices or it's really him.  I don't know enough to feel this may not happen again," Burton Blaurock said.

The silver lining - if there is one - police found stolen items in Lawson's car and home - which business owners will get back after the investigation.  

"But its more than that, it's, the big problem is going to bed at night and thinking this may happen a third time,"  Burton Blaurock said.

"What happened in 2012, we can start the new year not having to worry about one individual," Guitron said.

"You know, yes, that is a good way to start the year. And not have to worry about it happening again maybe. I like that," Lauren Blaurock said.
 
Lawson remains behind bars on eleven million dollars bail.

He is scheduled to be arraigned in court Friday.