Bethesda Man Arrested for Carjacking, Robbery

Michael Gainer Rothenberg | MCPD

Montgomery County police charged a 27-year-old Bethesda man for an armed carjacking and an armed robbery.

Michael Gainer Rothenberg, 27, of Buxton Terrace was charged in the carjacking, which occurred March 1, and the robbery, which occurred March 4, a police statement said.

The carjacking occurred about 5 p.m., in the parking lot of the Barnes and Noble at 12089 Rockville Pike, Rockville, police said. The carjacker approached the driver at her car, a 2004 Lexus, displayed a black handgun and ordered her to drop her car keys and her bag to the ground, police said. The woman complied and the carjacker took the keys and victim’s bag and fled in the car, police said.

The robbery occurred about 9 p.m. at the 7-Eleven at 7305 MacArthur Blvd., Glen Echo, police said. The robber entered the store and pointed a handgun at the clerk, police said. The robber ordered the clerk to place cash from the registers in a store bag, and then fled from the store, police said.

The Howard County Police Department told county police Monday it had recovered the Lexus that had been stolen in the carjacking. Howard County detectives told local detectives that on that day, someone had committed an armed robbery, fleeing the scene in the Lexus, police said. The car became involved in a collision and the driver abandoned the car, police said.

According to a Howard County police statement, a robbery occurred at a Crown gasoline station in Columbia around 10:45 a.m. Monday. The clerk reported that a man wearing a gray hoodie and gray pants entered the store, displayed a handgun and demanded money, police said. The suspect stole cash and fled in a car that had been previously reported stolen, Howard police said.

A few minutes after the robbery, police received a call for a carjacking involving the same suspect, police said. Detectives believe the robber struck another vehicle while driving from the gas station. Witnesses said the suspect exited his car, pointed a gun at the woman driving the other vehicle and demanded her car. The suspect drove off in the woman’s red Mini Cooper, police said.

No one was injured in either incident.

Through investigation, detectives identified Rothenberg as a suspect. He was found and arrested in Frederick on Monday evening. The stolen MINI Cooper was recovered in another jurisdiction.

Police checked the car registration of the robber’s first car and found out it had been stolen from Montgomery County, according to the Montgomery County police statement. Inside the car, Howard detectives found Rothenberg’s driver’s license, and a receipt that documented a musical instrument had been pawned, police said. MCPD detectives noted that an instrument was in the Lexus when it was stolen, police said.

Howard County officers found and arrested Rothenberg on Monday.  MCPD detectives responded to Howard County and interviewed Rothenberg, which led to his arrest for the March 4 robbery of the Glen Echo 7-Eleven.

In addition to the Montgomery County charges, Rothenberg has been charged with armed robbery, robbery, first- and second-degree assault, theft, and armed carjacking, according to Howard police.

Online court records show Rothenberg is being held without bail in Howard County.

Douglas Tallman

About Douglas Tallman

Reporter with 35 years experience throughout Maryland. Reach me at dtallman@mymcmedia.org or via Twitter at @MCM-Doug

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