South Lake Tahoe Police Department is crediting a local resident for watching over his neighborhood early this afternoon, which contributed to the identification and capture of two suspects who had stolen a package delivered to his neighbor’s front porch. The man saw a white lifted Chevy Silverado pickup truck being driven slowly down Tanglewood Avenue in South Lake Tahoe. The truck was occupied by a man and a woman. A home near to the witness had a package lying on the front porch. The suspect’s truck stopped in front of this house. A woman got out of the truck and picked up the package. She returned with it to the truck. This appeared suspicious to the witness, who continued to watch as the suspects inspected the porch of at least one other neighborhood residence in the same suspicious manner. The man called 911 and reported the circumstances along with a description of the vehicle and its occupants. Officers responded to investigate, but the vehicle had left the area upon their arrival.
Officers continued to look for this vehicle during the course of their watch. An officer eventually spotted the vehicle parked in the South Y Shopping Center. Officers conducted a brief surveillance of the parked vehicle until a man and woman returned to it. They were identified as 24 year old Brandon Graves Perreira and 26 year old Virginia Morris, both residents of Gustine, California. Both individuals are on felony probation for a host of drug and theft charges out of Stanislaus County, California. Based on the conditions of their felony probation, officers conducted a search of their persons and vehicle. They discovered the stolen property (tire chains), which had been ordered for delivery to the victim’s home. The reporting party personally identified both people and their truck as those he watched in his neighborhood at the time he called. Officers arrested both suspects and charged them with felony conspiracy to commit a crime, misdemeanor theft, and for violating probation.
Theft of delivered packages is a type of criminal activity which can occur any time of year, but tends to increase during the holiday season. The police encourage strong neighborhood relationships to help ward away the potential for such crimes. Residents should consider options of asking a trusted person to watch for, and to secure, such deliveries if they anticipate the possibility of being away from home when a delivery is made. Conspicuous home security signs posted in front of a residence, as well as video cameras can also help to deter such crimes of opportunity and to identify suspects should a theft occur.