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Cops Bust Suspected Metal Theft Operations

George Severson

Cops Bust Suspected Metal Theft Operations

CREATED Dec. 14, 2011


The Riverside County Sheriff's Department is asking citizens to be aware of their surroundings and to report any suspicious activity, including any vehicle or persons, to law enforcement.


COACHELLA VALLEY - Two metal theft operations were busted in the Coachella Valley this week, according to The Riverside County Sheriff's Department.

Deputies from the Palm Desert Station responded to a report of a residential burglary in progress at the 16000 block of Via Montana, in the unincorporated area of Desert Hot Springs Tuesday morning. Deputies arrived to the location within minutes and noticed a rear window to the residence had been forced open. Inside the residence, officers located three adults and three juveniles, all of whom were attempting to steal aluminum from the property.

The adults have been identified as Eddie Navez and Edgar Navez, both 19, and Lebron Ross Flores, 18, all residents of Palm Springs. The adults were booked at the Indio Jail and the juveniles were booked into juvenile hall, all on burglary charges.

Anyone with additional information regarding this incident is encouraged to contact the Riverside County Sheriff's Department, Palm Desert Station at (760) 836-1600 or by calling Crime Stoppers at 760-341-STOP (7867). 

The second bust happened several hours later around 5 P.M.. Deputies from the Southern Coachella Valley Communities Services District Team served three search warrants in the unincorporated communities of Mecca and Thermal in reference to the theft of over $40,000 worth of agricultural aerator motors from a business located in the 87000 block of Airport Boulevard in Thermal.

Riverside County Sheriff's Department say the property was recovered after being found at a local recycling yard. David Olalde, 49, of Thermal, and Jorge Rodriguez, 31, of Mecca were arrested for suspicion of possession of stolen property. Both were booked at the Indio Jail.

The Southern Coachella Valley Community Services District funds deputies to increase the level of proactive enforcement in the southern end of the Coachella Valley. Anyone with information regarding this incident or any other metal thefts in the Southern Coachella Valley is encouraged to contact District deputies, or investigators from the Indio Station at 760-863-8990 or by calling the Valley Crime Stoppers program at 760-341-7867 (STOP).