News Release News Release The City of Palo Alto
Communications Department
650-329-2607
250 Hamilton Ave
Palo Alto, CA 94301

6/2/2015

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
PRESS RELEASE 06022015
Subject :

Auto Burglar Arrested After Ramming Detectives, Vehicle Pursuit
Contact : James Reifschneider, Detective Sergeant, Police Department    650-329-2413
Palo Alto, CA -- Police from Los Altos, Mountain View, and Palo Alto teamed up to arrest a serial auto burglar after the wanted felon rammed an occupied detective car during an arrest attempt and proceeded to lead police on a vehicle pursuit.  No one was injured, and police booked the suspect for an array of charges.

Vehicle burglaries continue to plague Bay Area cities, and Palo Alto is no exception.  In May 2015, we had 59 auto burglaries reported to us, the highest month since December 2013 when we had 53.  Whereas there were a total of 313 auto burglaries in 2014 (down from a six-year high dating back to 2008 of 409 in 2013), there have already been 192 auto burglaries reported to us in the first five months of 2015.  Generally speaking, downtown parking garages and parking lots along El Camino Real have been the most frequently targeted locations.

On Monday, June 1, 2015, between 11:07 a.m. and 11:26 a.m., our 24-hour dispatch center received four separate calls of auto burglaries that had just occurred.  The first occurred in the Town & Country Shopping Center parking lot at 855 El Camino Real, the second occurred at the Starbucks parking lot at 2000 El Camino Real, the third occurred at the Corner Bakery Cafe parking lot at 3375 El Camino Real, and the fourth occurred at the Hobee's Restaurant parking lot at 4224 El Camino Real.  In each case, unoccupied vehicles with personal electronic items (laptops, iPads, and the like) left in plain view had their windows smashed and the property stolen from inside.

A witness to the burglary at the Corner Bakery Cafe promptly called police and provided a vehicle description and license plate of the suspect vehicle (a burgundy 2006 Mercedes CLS-500 4-door sedan), as well as a description of the suspect himself.  Officers immediately recognized the vehicle and the suspect description as belonging to a suspect they had identified from a string of three auto burglaries that had occurred on Wednesday, May 27, 2015, at the Edgewood Shopping Center at 2050 Channing Avenue.  Detectives and patrol officers spread out to cover other commonly-victimized areas, and dispatchers notified surrounding jurisdictions about the vehicle and what had occurred.

At about 11:32 a.m., an officer from the Mountain View Police Department observed the suspect vehicle in the In-N-Out Burger parking lot at 1159 North Rengstorff Avenue in Mountain View.  Detectives from the Palo Alto Police Department were already in that area looking for the suspect.  The detectives attempted to apprehend the suspect before he could commit another burglary.  Instead, the suspect drove off through the parking lot, intentionally ramming an unmarked Palo Alto Police Department detective car that had been blocking the exit.  There were two detectives inside that car at the time it was struck, but fortunately, neither detective was injured.  The vehicle sustained moderate damage.

After ramming the unmarked car, the suspect drove onto southbound U.S. Highway 101.  Two officers from the Mountain View Police Department attempted to stop the suspect, but he refused to yield.  The officers initiated a vehicle pursuit at 11:34 a.m., now knowing that the suspect had intentionally struck an occupied vehicle.  The suspect was able to complete a high-speed lane change across three traffic lanes to exit at Mathilda Avenue in Sunnyvale and get away.  The officers last saw him exiting onto Mathilda Avenue, and broadcast that information on the police radio.

At about 11:47 a.m., an officer from the Los Altos Police Department observed the suspect vehicle driving in the area of Grant Road and Fremont Avenue.  As soon as the suspect saw the officer, the suspect drove off at a high rate of speed and disappeared.  The officer broadcast what he had seen on the police radio, and other Los Altos Police Department personnel moved into the area to help search for the suspect.

A short time later, a Los Altos Police Department detective in an unmarked car observed the suspect walking in the 700 block of Berry Avenue.  The detective called for additional officers and kept the suspect under observation.  The suspect walked into the Los Altos Bakery inside the Rancho Shopping Center at 600 Fremont Avenue.  Officers from the Los Altos Police Department went into the bakery and found the suspect hiding inside the restroom.  They detained him without incident.

Detectives from the Los Altos Police Department found the suspect’s damaged vehicle parked in the 700 block of Alvina Court, immediately around the corner from where they had first seen him walking.  Detectives from the Palo Alto Police Department towed the suspect’s vehicle for investigation and are currently processing it, as well as items inside of it, for evidence.  Detectives recovered all of the property stolen from the four Palo Alto auto burglaries that had occurred on June 1, and they also located personal checkbooks and a cell phone they believe to have been stolen in other auto burglaries from other jurisdictions.  Detectives are working to identify the owner of those items.

Officers from the Palo Alto Police Department booked the suspect, 27-year-old Andrew Peacock of Oakland, into the Santa Clara County Main Jail for the felony charges of assault with a deadly weapon (for driving his vehicle at an occupied car), and seven counts of auto burglary (four from June 1, and three from May 27).  They also booked him for the misdemeanor charges of possession of stolen property, resisting/delaying an officer (for driving away from the detectives who had attempted to stop him in the In-N-Out Burger parking lot), and driving on a suspended license.  Additionally, police also booked him for three outstanding felony warrants (burglary from the Menlo Park Police Department, burglary from the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office, and false personation, evading, reckless driving, and driving on a suspended license from the Richmond Police Department).  He is on active probation out of Alameda County for a prior conviction of burglary.  Additional charges against Peacock may be forthcoming from the Mountain View Police Department and the Los Altos Police Department as a result of his actions on June 1.  A booking photo of Peacock is attached to this release.

Investigators from all three agencies will be working with their counterparts from throughout the Peninsula and beyond, as well as mining through past cases in our own jurisdictions, to ascertain if Peacock may be connected to any other auto burglaries or other crimes.

"This is a great example of interagency cooperation, with three departments working together to locate and arrest a prolific burglar," said Lieutenant Zach Perron of the Palo Alto Police Department.  “We very much appreciate the help from the Los Altos Police Department and the Mountain View Police Department, and we’re pleased that this incident ended without anyone being injured."

Burglars will often smash windows to remove backpacks, bags, or briefcases that the victims had left in plain view.  Suspects often target rental vehicles, perhaps with the thinking that business travelers often travel with personal electronic devices.

We recommend that you take your valuables will you whenever possible, or at the very least, secure them out of sight prior to arriving at your destination.  Leaving valuables in plain view is a sure way to attract the attention of a burglar.  Also, be sure to always lock your vehicle and close the windows when it is unattended.  Having a locked vehicle will not prevent a suspect from breaking a window, but it will absolutely have a deterrent effect on some criminals.  For more crime prevention tips, please visit our website at www.cityofpaloalto.org/StopCrime.

Anyone with information about this incident or this suspect is asked to call our 24-hour dispatch center at 650-329-2413.  Anonymous tips can be e-mailed to paloalto@tipnow.org or sent via text message or voice mail to 650-383-8984.  Tips can also be submitted anonymously through our free mobile app, downloadable at bit.ly/PAPD-AppStore or bit.ly/PAPD-GooglePlay.





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