Palo Alto police last week arrested two men who they said broke into cars at Stanford Shopping Center and, in one case, stole two backpacks containing electronics, the department announced in a news release Thursday.
The arrest occurred shortly after noon last Thursday, Aug. 8, when officers saw the two men in a vehicle that was associated with recent car burglaries, police said. The duo was in a vehicle heading north on Alma Street downtown and approaching Stanford Shopping Center when officers stopped them at Sand Hill Road and Vineyard Lane, according to the news release.
Inside the vehicle, police reportedly found a window punch — a tool commonly used to shatter car windows — and stolen items from a burglary that took place at the shopping center on July 25. Officers said that theft involved someone breaking the window of a vehicle and stealing two backpacks with electronics. Police also found an item associated with that burglary in the vehicle and connected one of the two men, a 19-year-old San Francisco resident, to that theft.
The other man, a 20-year-old also from San Francisco, is associated with a separate burglary that occurred on July 20, also at Stanford Shopping Center, according to the news release. Police said someone broke the window of a vehicle in the mall parking lot and entered the car, but did not take any items.
The two men were each arrested on suspicion of felony auto burglary and misdemeanor possession of burglary tools. Both were booked into the Santa Clara County Main Jail, police said.
The department is investigating whether the two men are connected to other burglaries in surrounding cities, police said.
Anyone with information about the burglaries is asked to call the department's 24-hour dispatch center at 650-329-2413. Anonymous tips can be emailed to email@example.com or sent by text message or voicemail to 650-383-8984. Tips can also be submitted anonymously through the police's free mobile app, downloadable at bit.ly/PAPD-AppStore or bit.ly/PAPD-GooglePlay.
Editor's note: The Weekly's policy is to withhold the names of those arrested for most crimes until the District Attorney has determined there is sufficient evidence to file charges in the case. See our guidelines here.