SAN DIEGO (CNS) - District Attorney Summer Stephan asked on Wednesday for the public's help in identifying potential victims of an auto theft crime spree in San Diego in which hundreds of suspected stolen items have been recovered.
An investigation initiated by the Regional Auto Theft Task Force in Chula Vista resulted in the prosecution of two defendants in the case involving more than 50 victims.
"Auto theft and burglaries have a direct impact on victims who often need their vehicles to get to work, take their children to school and conduct their daily lives," Stephan said. "Ultimately, this crime spree affected dozens of people across San Diego County and in addition to holding the defendants accountable, we're working with our partners at RATT to return large amounts of stolen property to victims."
View some of the property recovered in the auto theft crime spree case by clicking the Facebook post below.
On March 27, Chula Vista police contacted the RATT team regarding a stolen vehicle parked inside a motel parking lot. RATT detectives responded to the motel to investigate and arrested two suspects.
As a result of the arrests, RATT detectives recovered 144 items of suspected stolen property, including cell phones, IDs, credit cards, purses and a computer laptop. Over the course of the investigation, RATT detectives identified a total of four stolen vehicles and more than 53 victims believed to be connected to the crime spree.
More than 40 vehicles were burglarized during the crime spree over the course of several days across the county.
Detectives have been able to identify less than half of the 53 potential victims they believe are connected to the crime spree and are asking for the public's help in identifying additional victims. Victims would have had their vehicles burglarized during the last two weeks of March in downtown San Diego, Tierrasanta, Mission Valley, Mid-City, Spring Valley, San Diego State University area, National City, Chula Vista and Imperial Beach.
Last month, 22-year-old Malcolm Brown pleaded guilty to vehicle theft and residential burglary and Alexis Carr, 25, pleaded guilty to auto theft and burglary. They are scheduled to be sentenced on May 8.
If you believe you are a victim in the case, contact the San Diego County Regional Auto Theft Task Force at (858) 627-4000.
RATT Auto Theft Crime Spree PDF file: