Santa Cruz officials revealed that their investigation into an alleged crime spree that occurred earlier this month, has led to the arrest of three men suspected of burglary, arson, auto theft and conspiracy.handcuffs.jpg
Authorities stated that the three Bay Area men were allegedly caught on surveillance cameras committing the crimes, which took place in the city and county of Santa Cruz.The men were arrested last Wednesday, and are facing multiple felony charges.
The series of crimes reportedly included the theft of a maintenance truck from a local park, smashing of a business window and stealing a safe containing credit, debit cards, and cash. Following the alleged burglary, according to authorities, the men then drove the truck to an area where they set it on fire. The men then allegedly proceeded to use the stolen credit cards at a local minimart and Safeway.
Santa Cruz police officers, whom were dispatched to investigate a report of arson, found evidence of the burglary in the vandalized truck.
Burglary and Auto Theft are both considered to be theft crimes under California law. The punishment for these types of crimes depends on the type and amount of the theft, and also the criminal history of the defendant.
Some crimes, such as in the case of a first time petty theft, will always be charged as a misdemeanor. Other crimes, like burglary, are sometimes referred to as “wobblers,” as they can be filed as either a misdemeanor or a felony, depending upon the facts of the case. If charged as a misdemeanor, these crimes are punishable by up to one year in county jail. If charged as a felony, they can be punishable by 16 months, 2 years, or 3 years in state prison, and can also count as a strike under the three strikes rule.
Additionally, in this case the conspiracy charges could mean that the men face increased penalties, or at least an increased risk of conviction. Therefore, in this cases it is critical that each person has their own separate attorney representing their best interests. It may surprise you to learn that when co-defendants share defense counsel, they could potentially waive their rights to confidentiality regarding any conversations that take place in the presence of other defendants, and certain other evidence. Therefore, it is important to realize what foregoing your own attorney might mean for your case.
If you or loved ones has been accused of arson, burglary, auto theft, conspiracy, or any other crime, call our experienced Bay Area criminal defense attorneys today.
If you have been accused of a crime, it is in your best interests to hire an attorney as soon as possible, even if formal charges have not been filed yet. Do not speak with a detective, investigator or police officer before speaking to one of our experienced attorneys. We have the convenient locations to serve you, in San Francisco call: (415) 946-4020, in Martinez call: (925) 335-6444, and in Redwood City call: (650) 249-6805 in order to schedule your free initial consultation. You can also contact us through our website.