LAH resident credited with ending spree of burglaries

Sheriff’s detectives credit a Los Altos Hills woman with ending a spree of burglaries throughout Silicon Valley.

After suspecting someone was prowling in her yard in the early hours of Feb. 22, the woman called the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office, and responding deputies arrested Aptos resident Nathan Hubbard for attempted burglary.

The 23-year-old – accused of ransacking homes in Los Altos, Los Altos Hills and nearby cities while their occupants slept – faces multiple burglary-related charges. Detectives have connected Hubbard to at least 10 residential burglaries committed since 2015, Sheriff’s Capt. Rich Urena said. Hubbard is being held without bail at the Elm- wood Correctional Complex in Milpitas, according to jail records.

Hubbard probably wouldn’t be there if that Los Altos Hills woman had not observed and reported suspicious activity outside her home on the 27000 block of Byrne Park Lane. From her bedroom, she noticed flashlight beams emanating from her yard, according to Urena, and called 911 at 4:51 a.m.

Deputies rushing to the property passed a sedan parked on the side of Taaffe Road, but they didn’t think too much of it until they drove by again after searching the area and spotted a figure attempting to hide behind the vehicle. A motorized bicycle stolen from another Byrne Park Lane home sat nearby.

Hubbard “tried to sell the deputies of his reasons for being in the area at 5 a.m.,” according to a Sheriff’s Office Facebook post. “These deputies weren’t buying Hubbard’s fictional story.”

During their investigation, deputies uncovered a window punch, two-way radios, gloves and a face mask associated with Hubbard, who was already on probation for residential burglary, Urena said. A search of his Aptos home revealed heaps of stolen valuables, including a motorcycle lifted from a Los Altos home in 2016, an ID and a Mercedes-Benz key snagged from a Saratoga home in 2017, and a bicycle hijacked from a home in unincorporated Los Altos Hills in 2017. Detectives also matched an iPad and an iPhone to another Los Altos Hills home, but it is not clear when Hubbard stole them, because the owners didn’t know they were missing.

Hubbard allegedly gained entry to many of his targets through doors and windows left unlocked at night, and some of the victims didn’t even know they were missing valuables, according to Urena.

“It is our belief he was, unfortunately, walking around, canvassing neighborhoods at night,” Urena said.

While it’s common for burglars to work in pairs or as part of a gang to facilitate lookouts, the evidence collected so far has not connected Hubbard with an accomplice, Urena said. And he is not suspected in the recent rash of daytime residential burglaries committed in Los Altos Hills. Detectives are still working to connect names with the faces captured by home surveillance video during an incident related to those crimes.

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