Steven Raymond Stogsdill, 38, pleaded not guilty before San Diego Superior Court Judge Maureen Hallahan to five felony charges.
Stogsdill is charged with holding up two clerks at the 7-Eleven at 3146 Sports Arena Blvd. around 8 a.m. on Jan. 8 as well as discharging a handgun once. No one was hit.
He is also charged with kidnapping the taxi driver for robbery and kidnapping during a carjacking, all of which occurred at gunpoint, said Deputy District Attorney James Koerber.
The prosecutor said Stogsdill could receive a life sentence without the possibility of parole if he is convicted of all charges. The use and discharge of a gun significantly increases the penalty.
Stogsdill asked a cab driver at the Old Town Trolley to take him to the 7-Eleven to get some coffee. He told the cab driver he didn’t have any money for the ride, but would get some at the store, said Koerber.
Koerber asked the judge to decline setting any bail, considering “the extreme risk to public safety” by firing a gun during crimes in the Midway District. He said the least amount of bail should be $500,000.
Stogsdill’s attorney, Raymond Aragon, said he has no prior record and is a 10-year Army veteran. He said he had strong community ties, and suggested bail be set at $100,000.
Hallahan said multiple victims were threatened at gunpoint, suggesting “he is a danger to the community.”
The cab driver was interviewed by Dave Summers, a reporter at KNSD-TV (Channel 7) and said he was threatened repeatedly by Stogsdill during the ride away from the store.
“If you stop for the police, I’m going to shoot you,” said the cab driver, who was only identified as Samuel.
Samuel said the gunman kept telling him “drive fast, fast, fast!”
The driver took Stogsdill up Rosecrans Street, but a traffic jam at Nimitz Boulevard and North Harbor Drive forced him to stop at the intersection. Police officers then opened the back seat door and arrested him.
Koerber said police found $82 in cash and the gun in the back seat. The driver, who said he has driven cabs for 20 years, was not injured, but Summers said he took the rest of the day off.
A preliminary hearing was set for Jan. 24.