Northeast Fresno homeowner comes face to face with burglar in middle of crime spree

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A Northeast Fresno homeowner interrupted a burglary but not in time to stop it. (KFSN)

A Northeast Fresno homeowner interrupted a burglary but not in time to stop it. Turns out the suspect got away with thousands of dollars' worth of power tools.

The crime spree happened this morning in a neighborhood near Teague and Cedar. The burglar was confronted by the last victim after breaking into several cars.

Tony Pasco's normal routine of grabbing the morning paper was interrupted Thursday when he came face to face with a burglar.

"He was running, he kinda caught me off guard. I says, 'what are you doing here?' I said, 'you need to get the hell out of here.' He turned around and ran to his car, and jumped in it and hauled down the street."

It didn't only happen to Pasco-- up and down East Richmond Avenue car after car was broken into. Many older cars that the owners say were locked-- yet not a single window was broken. Tammy Young's husband's Nissan Xterra was one of the cars hit.

"His car had been tossed. Obviously, somebody had been in there. Luckily his garage door opener is broken, so they were not able to access our home which I've been told is how they got access to others in the neighborhood."

Four others were broken into as well. A Toyota Sequoia still has fingerprint dust from officers trying to lift a decent print from it.

Neighbors assume the thief was in the area for quite some time. He took garage door openers from each car that had one in it.

Pasco didn't realize the heist had happened until he started connecting the dots.

"The door was like cracked open a little bit like this-- where I noticed it wasn't shut. So when I came out here and opened the door- then I saw this mess in here and figured, oh, that's not good."

Then Pasco turned to his garage to find another upsetting discovery.

"I noticed that everything was opened, my cabinets, drawers, everything was open, and I noticed that my flat screen TV that was over here was missing."

The thief got away with power drills, saws, and sanders. Pasco owns Sebring West Automotive and collects tools of all sorts. He is still tallying what's missing.

Pasco is also figuring out how to protect himself in the future from being targeted.

"I have an alarm that I generally don't set at night but I guarantee I'm going to be setting it at night now. I'm not going to ever have a remote in my car anymore, I'm going to put it on my keychain. I figure 25 years you were lucky, now it's time to arm up."

It's unclear if the thief is working alone but Fresno Police have now stepped up patrols in the area.

Many in the neighborhood said they will be installing home surveillance systems.
Related Topics:
newsburglaryfresnocrimetrackerFresno - Northeast
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