Thu10022014

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Two arrested on burglary charges

Los Altos Police today (Nov. 6) announced the arrests of two East Palo Alto residents believed to be responsible for 15 burglaries in the Bay Area, including at least one in Los Altos.

According to Los Altos Police Sgt. Scott McCrossin, 35-year-old Ana Lauese (top left) and 33-year-old Malinda Ladson were arrested in Los Altos Oct. 29 on charges of residential burglary, possession of stolen property and possession of a controlled substance.

Lauese was booked into Santa Clara County Jail on charges of residential burglary, possession of stolen property and providing false information to a peace officer. She is being held without bail. Ladson (bottom left) was booked on charges of residential burglary, possession of stolen property and possession of a controlled substance. She is being held on $150,000 bail.

According to McCrossin, the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office this afternoon also charged the pair with eight additional counts of residential burglary.

The arrests were announced on the heels of a recent spike in residential and commercial burglaries in Los Altos. Police last week announced the arrests of two Oakland residents allegedly connected to a pair of July burglaries in Los Altos (see the Nov. 7 print edition of the Los Altos Town Crier for details).

“We’re continuing to be vigilant,” said McCrossin, who credited the arrests to additional patrols, predictive policing methods and concerned residents. “We’ve seen an increase in calls from residents who are reporting suspicious activity in their neighborhoods.”

The arrests occurred after officers observed one of the suspects in a parked vehicle along the 600 block of Almond Avenue Oct. 29. The suspect in the vehicle subsequently provided officers with a false name and exhibited “suspicious behavior,” according to a press release announcing the arrests. The second suspect, located nearby on Higgins Avenue, gave a different explanation for being in the neighborhood, according to McCrossin. That led to a search of the suspects’ vehicle, which turned up stolen property taken from a home in Palo Alto earlier that day, as well as methamphetamines.

Follow-up investigations Oct. 29 and 31 by Palo Alto and Los Altos police detectives led to the recovery of additional stolen property, including jewelry and electronics, he added. McCrossin noted that the two suspects have so far been connected to at least 15 residential burglaries in Santa Clara, Contra Costa and San Mateo counties. That includes at least one Los Altos home burglarized during a 12-day spree in late September and early October that resulted in more than a dozen break-ins throughout the city.

McCrossin said the police department is working with the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office to seek additional charges against the suspects for residential burglaries that have occurred in the county.

For more information about this breaking story, visit www.latc.com or read the Nov. 14 issue of the Los Altos Town Crier.

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