Local News

Monday, Mar 18 2013 10:01 AM

Man suspected of Tehachapi car burglaries arrested in Ventura

According to authorities, a 42-year-old man suspected of burglarizing vehicles in Tehachapi on March 4 has been arrested after confessing to committing a string of car burglaries in various cities within a two-week span.

On March 8, James Prizzi was booked into Ventura County jail on charges of unlawful driving or taking of a vehicle and felony second degree burglary of a vehicle. His bail has been set at $90,000.

Prizzi allegedly stole a new Kia Optima from a dealership in Ventura on Feb. 22 and then drove the car to various other areas, including Lost Hills, Palmdale and Tehachapi, burglarizing several vehicles along the way.

During their investigation of a suspicious vehicle in the parking lot of the Tehachapi Unified School District office at 300 South Robinson St. and two vehicle burglaries in the parking lot at Tompkins Elementary School at 1120 South Curry St. on March 4, officers were led to the USA gas station on Tucker Rd. where a credit card stolen from one of the cars had been used.

Surveillance tapes from the gas station indicated that it was the same car that was seen at the school district office.

Later in the day, stolen property from the vehicles at Tompkins was found behind a Denny’s restaurant in Mojave. Surveillance tapes indicated that the same car was involved.

From those tapes, Tehachapi Police were able to track the vehicle’s paper plates to a car dealership in Ventura and contacted the Ventura Police Department.

Prizzi is due in court on March 21, where he is expected to plead guilty to at least five vehicle burglaries, as well as auto theft.

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