RIVERSIDE – A police officer from Riverside displayed keen observation skills this week by identifying the third suspect in a burglary case that occurred earlier this year.
Three individuals broke into an apartment in early March in the 100 block of Lawton Road, according to a news release issued Wednesday by the Riverside Police Department. Investigators discovered their goal was to steal drugs that one of the residents of the apartment kept there as well as electronic equipment, police said.
A student at Riverside Brookfield High School, the victim confronted one of the suspects the following day at school, police said. Officers responded to a disturbance at the school, and through their investigation uncovered the plan to steal the drugs and electronics, police said.
Armando Marentes, an 18-year-old North Riverside resident, was arrested and charged with residential burglary for the break-in and disorderly conduct resulting from the disturbance at the school. The victim, a 16-year-old Riverside resident, was charged with disorderly conduct, police said.
Jimi Sieja, 18, of North Riverside was arrested March 17 in the case and charged with residential burglary, police said. But the third suspect continued to elude police, authorities said.
An officer spotted the third suspect Tuesday afternoon at the Maybrook Courthouse in Maywood on an unrelated case. The suspect, a male juvenile from North Riverside, was detained by North Riverside police after they were notified that he was wanted in another case, police said. Representatives of the North Riverside Police Department turned the juvenile over to Riverside authorities, police said.
The juvenile suspect was uncooperative with police and was charged with one count of residential burglary, police said.
The other two suspects both pleaded guilty last week to criminal trespass to a residence, police said. They each received two years of conditional discharge and 45 days in the Sheriff's Work Alternative Program as well as court fines totaling $245, police said.
Riverside Police Chief Tom Weitzel said he was pleased that the third suspect was finally arrested. He said new information is coming to light in this investigation and that an additional arrest may be forthcoming.