News Release News Release The City of Palo Alto
Communications Department
250 Hamilton Ave
Palo Alto, CA 94301


Subject :

Alert Resident Reports Suspicious Behavior, Police Arrest Three
Contact : Lieutenant Zach Perron, Palo Alto Police Department    650-329-2413
Palo Alto, CA -- A Palo Alto resident who had seen recent news reports urging the public to report suspicious behavior in their neighborhoods did just that yesterday morning, and the tip he provided led police to arrest three adults.

On Monday, February 27, 2012, at about 10:45 AM, the resident noticed a vehicle occupied by two women and a man driving slowly through his neighborhood in the area of Waverley Street near Oregon Expressway. He followed the vehicle from a distance and watched as it stopped to let the man out. The man walked to the front door of a home, knocked, waited for a few seconds, and then returned to the car. The alert resident, who told police he had seen media reports about the recent residential burglary trend and the
accompanying suggestion to report suspicious activity, watched this same behavior repeat itself at three separate houses. He then returned to his home and called 9-1-1.

Officers and detectives from the Palo Alto Police Department responded to the call. Within three minutes, a patrol officer located the vehicle and stopped it in the 2600 block of Middlefield Road. Police found the two females inside, but the man was not there. About 30 minutes later, a plainclothes detective located the man on foot at Oregon Expressway at West Bayshore Road, detained him for investigation, and subsequently determined that he was under the influence of a controlled substance.

Police searched the trio's vehicle and found burglary tools (including pry tools and screwdrivers) as well as personal identifying information belonging to someone else. Additionally, officers found an unopened package that had been delivered by UPS, but that had the shipping label ripped off. Its origin or destination could not easily be determined. Police ask that anyone expecting a delivery via UPS that they never received yesterday morning to please call our 24-hour dispatch center at 650-329-2413.

Officers and detectives are still investigating whether these three suspects may have any connection to recent area burglaries. There were no crimes reported yesterday in the neighborhood where these suspects were originally seen.

Police took the three suspects, all residents of San Jose, to the Santa Clara County Main Jail. Police booked Rochelle Vasquez, 36, and Becky Davis, 39, for possession of burglary tools and possession of personal identifying information belonging to another. Police booked Richard Sgambati, 33, for being under the influence of a controlled substance.

Booking photos of all three from yesterday's arrests are attached above.

"This is another great example of the public truly being our eyes and ears out there," said Lieutenant Zach Perron. "This resident saw something out of the ordinary, didn’t rationalize it, and called us to investigate. This is exactly what we want to have happen."

Officers from the Palo Alto Police Department also arrested Sgambati on December 11, 2011, for possession of stolen property and burglary tools, after determining he was in possession of copper piping stolen from a storage yard of a business in the 1000 block of East Meadow Circle (see the original press release dated 13 Dec 2011).

The Palo Alto Police Department asks that people continue to report suspicious activity immediately to 9-1-1. They ask that anyone having information about this case contact our 24-hour dispatch center at 650-329-2413. Anonymous tips can be e-mailed to or sent via text message or voicemail to 650-383-8984.