One man was arrested, and two others were being sought after allegedly stealing items from a hotel room and from vehicles in the parking lot.
“One of our officers saw a vehicle at a gas station downtown at about 3 a.m. (Wednesday) and knew the occupants were on probation,” said Grass Valley Police Sgt. Steve Johnson.
The officer stopped the vehicle and noticed some “peculiar” items inside — a flat-screen TV, a mini-fridge and a space heater, Johnson said.
The two men allegedly gave conflicting statements as to whom the items belonged to and how they got inside the vehicle. But because the officer could not confirm they had been stolen, the items were simply confiscated, and the men were not detained, Johnson said.
Later in the morning, officers tracked down a man identified as an associate of those two men, Antonio Duran Torres, 30, and discovered he was staying at a hotel on Sutton Way. According to Johnson, the television was found to be missing from his hotel room.
There were several other people in the room; Torres allegedly was located hiding in the shower.
Officers searched Torres and found hypodermic needles and other drug paraphernalia in his pockets, Johnson said. Officers also searched a backpack in the room and found a power drill and a power saw inside that had been engraved. The tools were traced back to several PG&E trucks that were parked in the parking lot, he said.
“Inside the backpack, they also found several shaved car keys, that are designed to easily give access to vehicles of the same make and model,” Johnson said.
Torres was arrested on suspicion of possessing stolen property and burglary tools, petty theft and possessing drug paraphernalia and booked into county jail. He was released on $3,250 bail.
He currently has three misdemeanor and four felony cases in Nevada County Superior Court.
In February, he allegedly led Nevada County Sheriff’s deputies on high-speed chase and abandoned a stolen vehicle at the intersection of Pierite Road and Ponderosa Way; at the time, he allegedly also had outstanding felony warrants in the Bay Area.
The other two men are currently being sought by Grass Valley Police officers, Johnson said.
To contact Staff Writer Liz Kellar, email email@example.com or call (530) 477-4229.