MALIBU—On Saturday, July 25, a man suspected of multiple car burglaries was arrested along the Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu. According to a press release from the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department, officers recovered over 100 items from his vehicle, including cellphones, laptops, tablets, car keys, and other miscellaneous items. Certain items of recently stolen property were returned to their owner.
Authorities identified the man as 33-year-old Israel Padilla, who is a registered sex offender due to a 2004 arrest in Oxnard, Ventura County. He was released in April, and was found to be in violation of his parole during his most recent arrest. He has been charged with numerous felonies for the burglaries.
The Pacific Coast Highway has been the scene of other burglary arrests before. The most recent incident, prior to Padilla’s arrest, was a high-speed chase that began in Santa Monica and ended in Hermosa Beach. The chase began when police were alerted to the burglary of an AT&T store on Wilshire Boulevard in Santa Monica. Upon police arrival, the suspects sped down the PCH toward Hermosa Beach, where they exited their vehicles and attempted to escape on foot.
Authorities warn that burglary or theft incidents can happen to anyone and advise residents and visitors to remove property from their cars and lock their doors. The LA County Sheriff’s Department runs a “see something, say something” campaign that encourages the public to report suspicious activity. The LAPD bomb squad closed down an entire block to inspect and detonate what was later discovered to be innocuous material, in West Hollywood last week.
The appeal to the public to help maintain order may stem from concern about the recent increase in robberies and other felonies, according to the Los Angeles Police Department’s crime statistics.
Crime in West Hollywood has seen a drop of 18 percent, but crime in the Los Angeles region has risen in the first few months of 2015. Los Angeles Mayor Garcetti said in response to the recent surge in crime, “Let me be clear: Any uptick in crime is unacceptable.”