Man, woman arrested for staging fake robbery in Gwinnett County

An employee of a Norcross business faked the store's robbery earlier this month, according to the Gwinnett County Police Department. That employee, and the man police say she conspired with, are facing charges. 

On April 5 at around 4 a.m., Esperanza Marisol Chacon called 911 claiming she had been robbed while closing her business on Pirkle Road in unincorporated Norcross earlier that morning. Chacon claimed that as she was leaving the business shortly before 1 a.m., an armed man coerced her back inside and demanded cash from the register. Allegedly, she handed over approximately $2,800 before the thief departed.

"It was all a show, it was all just a fake robbery staged by the two individuals to make it look like a robbery," said Cpl. Juan Madiedo with Gwinnett County Police Department. 

Surveillance video outside the store appears to show the employee leaving early in the morning on April 5. As she is closing the door, the video shows a man approaching her and both head back inside. "Her name is Esperanza Marisol Chacon and initially, she was identified as a victim, and later became the suspect, also in this case." 

David Galeano and Esperanza Chacon

Police say Chacon claimed a man was armed with a handgun, forced her back inside, and demanded money from the cash register. They say he took off with about $2,800.  

"Yeah, it's not clear to me exactly how they were going to split about $2,800 that were taken that morning, but it was obviously a mental slip up as she called it, and she regretted it, and claimed that they were in on it. They had conversations prior leading up to the incident getting together and making this happen as a fake robbery," Cpl. Madiedo said.  

Esperanza Marisol Chacon is charged with false report of a crime, theft by taking felony, and party to a crime, and David Galeano Cruz is charged with armed robbery and possession of a firearm during the commission of certain felonies.  Both individuals are currently detained in the Gwinnett County Jail.

"Detectives do tell me that there's a possibility of other victims out there by these two suspects," said Madiedo. "What they do know is there have been other incidents in or around that area where this incident took place." 

Gwinnett County Police detectives encourage anyone who may have been victimized by this duo to contact them at 770-513-5300.