SWAT unit gets young robbery suspects

Philadelphia police on Saturday arrested two teenagers who allegedly committed two gunpoint robberies in Frankford, then ran into a nearby apartment house for cover.

When members of the SWAT unit arrived at the house on the 4900 block of Saul St. shortly after 6:30 a.m., the suspects initially refused to surrender, according to Officer Christine O’Brien, a police department spokeswoman.

With the suspects on the second floor, police evacuated residents of the first floor, including two 4-year-old children. SWAT members arrested the suspects inside the building a short time later. No injuries were reported.

Lenue Howard, 19, and a second teenage male of unconfirmed identity and age have been charged with two counts of robbery. Both males live at the Saul Street address.

At 5:45 a.m. on Saturday, they allegedly approached a 52-year-old woman on the 1300 block of Wakeling St., pointed a shotgun at her and demanded her valuables. It is unknown if they took any possessions from the woman.

About 45 minutes later, the same suspects approached a 42-year-old man on the same block and demanded his belongings. The victim resisted. During a struggle, the shotgun fired with pellets, striking an unoccupied house nearby.

A witness told police that he heard the gunfire and saw two males running toward and into the Saul Street house. One of the suspects carried a shotgun, the witness said.

Police arrived at the suspects’ house a short time later. ••