The Tehachapi Police arrested a second suspect in the burglary of the Tehachapi Post Office just after 6 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 11 at the West Park Activity Center on West “D” Street.
The 16-year-old juvenile was arrested for burglary, conspiracy, vandalism and mail theft related to the Jan. 29 burglary.
Based upon a joint investigation with the US Postal Inspection Service, two persons of interest were identified in regard to the burglary. Both were juvenile males residing in the Tehachapi area.
On Wednesday, Jan. 30, a teenager who had also been reported as a missing person and was on probation for a prior arrest was arrested on narcotics charges and then interviewed by TPD and a Postal Inspector who were able to confirm his participation in the Post Office burglary. That teenager was booked into Kern County Juvenile Hall on felony charges of Possession of a Controlled Substance for Sale and Possession of a Controlled Substance.
When it was learned that the second teenager was at the activity center on Feb. 11, the original investigating officer from the Post Office burglary came to the scene and arrested the teen for commercial burglary, conspiracy, vandalism, and mail theft. He was subsequently booked into Kern County Juvenile Hall.
The suspects were identified through video surveillance tapes from the Post Office.
According to Tehachapi Police Chief Jeff Kermode, “It is TPD’s understanding that the US Postal Inspector will defer to a local prosecution due to the age of the suspects, rather than seeking a Federal filing.”
On Jan. 29, officers found that forced entry had been made into several of the parcel boxes, which are intended for delivery of items that are too large for the regular post office boxes. It did not appear that any of the regular post office boxes had been tampered with.
Both of the arrested teens are also expected to be charged with a commercial burglary that occurred on Jan. 28 at the Christian Bookstore, 108 E. Tehachapi Blvd.