Sarasota, Florida -- A Sarasota man has been charged in connection to at least two armed robberies at hotels in Sarasota in September.
On Sept. 18 at 10:17 p.m., Sarasota Police officers say 22-year-old Joseph Serrano walked into the lobby of the Golden Host Hotel in the 4600 block of North Tamiami Trail armed with a handgun. Serrano pointed the handgun at the victim's face, demanded money, emptied the victim's pockets and punched him in the stomach before fleeing.
On Sept. 25 at 12:52 a.m., officers say Serrano walked into the Marriot Residence Inn in the 1000 block of University Parkway armed with a handgun, approached a hotel clerk and demanded money. The victim refused, tried to grab the gun and Serrano hit the victim in the head with the gun before taking money and fleeing.
Later on Sept. 25 at approximately 2:39 p.m., officers responded to Hyatt Place Hotel in the 900 block of University Parkway in reference a suspicious person.
Hotel employees told officers a male matched the robbery suspect's description and he was sitting in the lobby. He was not registered as a guest. Serrano's physical build and clothing matched the video surveillance from the Golden Host Hotel.
At this time, Serrano has been charged with two counts of armed robbery, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and two counts aggravated battery with a firearm.