Police early this morning (Feb. 9) arrested a Los Altos man for allegedly burglarizing two homes in south Los Altos – the first a block from where he lives. The police apprehended Jesse Steele Mitchell at the second residence, 1-mile from the first, after the homeowner confronted him and notified the Los Altos Police. Capt. Andy Galea said the 22-year-old fled but was caught by the department’s K-9 unit.
Mitchell was hiding in bushes approximately 40 yards from the Brookmill Road home from which he allegedly stole a brass musical instrument. Minutes earlier, Mitchell stole a DVD player from a home on El Sereno Avenue, according to police. He is listed as a resident of Louise Lane, one street over from El Sereno.
The noise made by the suspect woke the Brookmill resident at approximately 3 a.m. Thursday. The resident “verbally confronted (the intruder),” according to police. “The homeowner heard something and said something to the effect of, ‘Hey, who’s there?’” said Galea, who added that nighttime burglaries – and interrupting one – “does not happen very often” in Los Altos.
“Most people who commit burglaries do not want a confrontation,” said Galea, explaining why they usually happen during the day when people are at work. “To actually enter a house when you know there’s a high probability someone’s in it is very unusual.”
Police arrived shortly after the resident called 911 and surrounded the area. With assistance from the department’s German Shepherd, Lord, officers found Mitchell in the bushes.
Detective Sgt. Scott McCrossin said police found an unloaded gun and marijuana in Mitchell’s car, along with “enough evidence” to suggest that Mitchell was also dealing drugs. McCrossin did not release specifics.