An Oakland man suspected of being the neatly dressed, bespectacled burglar in a white BMW who successfully broke into several Sonoma County markets now is in custody in lieu of $500,000 bail.
Tyrone Brennen, 27, initially was held on $40,000, then $100,000 and now is at a half-million dollars bail.
Detectives and prosecutors sought higher bail, fearing Brennen would get out of jail, disappear and continue his crime wave, said sheriff's Sgt. Mike Raasch.
Starting in August, Brennen is suspected of successfully breaking into small stores from Cloverdale to Bodega Bay, stealing tens of thousands of dollars.
Surveillance tapes at four burglaries show a man identified as Brennen, said Raasch.
An unusual method of breaking into the stores also helped detectives follow a path that led to the prolific burglar, he said.
He would remove entire glass doors, sometimes disarm alarms and then use a power tool to bore into safes, said Raasch.
Brennen currently is facing four felony charges, but detectives will ask the court to file at least three more burglary counts against him.
The unemployed man is a suspect in three Marin County business burglaries, according to sheriff's officials in that county.
Sonoma detectives also are asking neighboring counties to check for similar crimes and determine whether Brennen could be a suspect, Raasch said.
The man was arrested late Nov. 5, after he was found walking in west Marin County toward Petaluma.
Deputies and detectives from two counties had spent more than 15 hours searching for him in the Tomales hills. They believed they had interrupted his attempted burglary of a Tomales market, and he had disappeared into the countryside.
Marin deputies were alerted that the burglar in a white BMW could be in the area following a burglary at a Bodega Bay market. When deputies arrived before dawn in Tomales, they found a white 2010 BMW parked across the street from the store.
They also found that someone had broken into the store and apparently tried to break into a safe but left before opening it.
At about 11:15 p.m., a wet and dirty Brennen was spotted walking toward Petaluma, about five miles east of Tomales.
He had a large, undisclosed amount of cash in a pocket and a key to the BMW, said Raasch.