SUSPECTED THIEF FACES 6 FELONY CHARGES:OFFICIALS SAY SANTA ROSA MAN HAD $400K OF STOLEN ITEMS IN STORAGE UNITS
When detectives rolled up the door of a Santa Rosa storage unit, they found it jammed full of suspected stolen tools, appliances, furniture and antiques.
Three more storage units found in Sacramento also overflowed with stolen items, including a truck and trailers, tools, family photos and furniture, Sonoma County Sheriff's Sgt. Mike Raasch said.
The huge haul included the bulk of as much as $400,000 in possessions taken in seven burglaries earlier this year from residents in Santa Rosa and Davis, Raasch said.
Detectives said the burglar responsible was Jose Angel Orozco, 33, of Santa Rosa.
"He's a very active thief," Raasch said.
In court Friday, prosecutors charged Orozco with six felonies, including second-degree burglary and possession of stolen property. His bail remained set at $250,000.
He has been in the Sonoma County Jail since late March after he was arrested in Healdsburg. In that case, he is facing other felony and misdemeanor charges.
His girlfriend and alleged accomplice, 21-year-old Maria Susanna Resendiz of Sacramento, faces multiple similar charges. She also had been in jail in lieu of $250,000 bail.
"He was the mastermind," Raasch said. "She was helping him conceal the property. The storage units were under her name."
Defense Attorney Ben Adams, who is representing Orozco, on Saturday said his client would dispute the charges. "My client maintains his innocence," he said.
The crimes included taking items from private property and storage units and, in one case, driving off with a cargo trailer full of property that had been parked on a Davis street, Raasch said.
In May, six of the victims met detectives in Sacramento and filled vehicles, trucks and trailers with their belongings, said Sonoma County Sheriff's Detective James Percy.
The biggest theft occurred in early February at a Stony Point Road home involving about $200,000 in antiques and personal property.
Orozco allegedly knew the owner -- an antiques collector, officials said. The owner had allowed the suspect to store cargo trailers on his rural property.
A witness told detectives they'd seen Orozco and a woman named Maria late one night loading up trailers with items from the property, Raasch said.
Sheriff's detectives were looking for the couple when a Healdsburg police officer arrested Orozco on March 30.
He was taken into custody after officers found him with a burglary tool, drugs and a blow gun, according to Healdsburg police.
Orozco has remained in jail since the arrest.
Further investigation led to suspicion of Resendiz having rented the storage units and the expansion of the burglary cases.
One of the victims had a Roseland storage unit that adjoined a unit used by Orozco, Raasch said.
Detectives said Orozco had 24-hour access to the facility and they believe he broke into the adjoining unit late one night.
The unit was rented by Henry Pratt.
Pratt, 55, and his 18-year-old daughter had moved from Washington state to Santa Rosa last fall.
They had put all of their belongings in storage at a Roseland facility while they looked for a place to live. In April, Pratt discovered the storage unit was empty.
"Everything was gone. The place looked like it was swept clean, literally," Pratt said. "I was heartbroken. Everything we owned was in that unit."
He never expected to see any of it again. But paperwork found in one of the Sacramento units included Pratt's name, leading to the recovery of several of his belongings.
"We were able to get back a lot of pictures and family history. Wedding photos ... baby photos ..." Pratt said. "I feel extremely grateful and thankful."