By Tom Mustin

DENVER (CBS4) – Denver police are searching for a group of violent criminals who committed four armed robberies last Sunday.

“Chris” is afraid to show his face after being robbed at gunpoint by the masked bandits.

“It looked like a 12 gauge, sawed-off pump shotgun,” he told CBS4’s Tom Mustin.

On Jan. 3 a group of men committed four separate street robberies across the metro area. The crimes occurred between 4:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. on Lafayette Street, North Lowell Boulevard, South Williams Street and North Quitman Street.

Chris had been walking with his sister near 39th Avenue and Lowell when a dark SUV, possibly a RAV4, started following them. One man got out of the car wearing a ski mask.

An SUV like the one pictured was used in a series of armed robberies on Sunday evening. (credit: Denver Police)

An SUV like the one pictured was used in a series of armed robberies on Sunday evening. (credit: Denver Police)

“He went up to my sister. I heard him say, ‘Get on the ground. Give me your purse.’ We didn’t think anything of it,” he said. “I turned around, he had the shotgun to her face. Then he pointed at me and said, ‘You too homey. Get on the ground.'”

Chris says the masks prevented him from seeing the bandits’ faces.

“They took her purse, they took my wallet. They checked our pockets, and took both of our phones.”

That same afternoon, in broad daylight, the same men robbed two people in an alley off Lafayette Street.

“Extremely brazen,” said neighbor Ron Smith.

Smith says the two victims ran up to him right after the crime.

CBS4's Tom Mustin interviews Ron Smith (credit: CBS)

CBS4’s Tom Mustin interviews Ron Smith (credit: CBS)

“They said four men in a car pulled up wearing hoods, told them to get on the ground. They had a shotgun, and these four individuals took everything they had,” Smith said.

Denver police say the violence, and the brazen nature of the crimes are disturbing.

“It’s a concern. Anytime there’s a gun involved, someone can be harmed,” said police spokesman Sonny Jackson.

Meanwhile, Chris says he won’t feel safe until the crooks are behind bars.

“It would be awesome if we could catch them and bring them to justice.”

Police only have a vague description of the suspects. They’re looking for three or four males wearing dark hoodies and half masks.

Additional Information From The Denver Police Department

Remain anonymous and earn up to $2,000. Call Crime Stoppers at (720) 913-STOP (7867). Text to CRIMES (274637) then title DMCS and enter the message, or send an e-mail to metro-denvercrimestoppers.com; or use the Metro Denver Crime Stoppers mobile app which is immediately available as a free download on smartphones.

Tom Mustin is CBS4’s Weekend Anchor. He has been with CBS4 since 2002, and is always looking for great story ideas. Connect with Tom on Facebook or follow him on Twitter @TomCBS4.

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