FAIRFIELD — A man who used surveillance videos to help track down a burglary suspect says the car parked outside the burglarized home was photographed in another Fairfield neighborhood where $80,000 in goods were stolen and a woman reported trespassers at her home.
Mike Miller, block captain of Neighborhood Watch for the Woodlake development off Air Base Parkway, said a woman who lives on Renaissance Avenue off Green Valley Road 11 miles from Miller’s neighborhood provided the photo she took of a silver Toyota Corolla parked near her home July 29.
The license plate of the Corolla, with the same front end damage and missing hubcaps, matches the Corolla filmed in front of the home burglarized Sept. 26 on Shoreline Drive in Woodlake, said Miller, 44.
The woman asked not to be identified because she said a suspect in the July trespassing at her Renaissance Avenue home remains at large. She discovered the two men trespassing at her home in what she believes was checking out the property before attempting to burglarize it. Five days earlier, a break-in a few homes away resulted in an $80,000 loss to the residents.
She used her cellphone July 29 to photograph the car after the two men trespassed at her home. The two men, who said they were looking for a “Jeremy,” walked down the street away from her home but then ran back when she photographed the Corolla parked along the street.
They got in the car and sped off.
The woman, after learning about the Sept. 26 arrest of Kortney J. Avent, 22, of Fairfield, in the $10,000 Shoreline Circle burglary in Woodlake, got in touch with Miller about a possible connection to the July incident in her neighborhood. Avent has pleaded not guilty.
Facebook as well as Nextdoor, a private social network for neighbors to talk online, allows reaching more people more quickly, Miller said.
“A lot of communication would have been limited,” Miller said without the technology. “This kind of puts us into a network.”
Fairfield Police Lt. Greg Hurlbut said he understands the public interest in burglary cases.
“People are very frustrated getting burglarized,” he said. “It’s a very personal thing.”
Law enforcement has to identify suspects and provide evidence to prove they committed crimes, Hurlbut said. The Police Department reviews every burglary and officers investigating the crimes seek to solve them, he said.
“They’re very thorough,” Hurlbut said.
Miller and Eric Castleman, 38, whose Shoreline Circle house was burglarized, followed the Corolla on Sept. 28, two days after the break-in when the car traveled through the neighborhood. They recognized the vehicle from surveillance videos neighborhood residents had shared on social networks. Miller followed the car to get the license plate and Castleman forced the driver, who slowed to about 5 mph, to pull over.
Police arrested Avent, on suspicion of burglary and felony probation violations. His preliminary hearing is scheduled Tuesday in Solano County Superior Court for the Shoreline Circle burglary case.
Reach Ryan McCarthy at 427-6935 or firstname.lastname@example.org.