LA HABRA – On November 23 at about 4:00 p.m., an unwarranted rave party was held by teenagers at a residence that was listed for sale in the 1700 block of Chota Road, which resulted in notable damages to the house. The party was advertised on social media; however, the owner of the $7 million home, who was out of the country, was uninformed of the festivities.
The party continued until 9:00 a.m. the next morning, with over 100 people in attendance throughout the night and into the morning. Neighbors said they heard loud music and saw numerous parked cars in front of the home, but that it was not an unusual sight, as the owner himself, Nick Radoi, enjoyed hosting parties at the 9,000 square foot mansion.
The event continued until it was reported by a house sitter or groundskeeper. Unfortunately the report was too late, for during the hours of the party, burglary and vandalism took place in the residence that ultimately resulted in estimated damages of about $1 million. The massive loss prompted Industry Station detectives to investigate, and on Wednesday four search warrants and eight Ramey arrest warrants were set out in hopes to recover some of the damages.
“They call it a ghost party or mansion party,” said Capt. Tim Murakami of the sheriff’s Industry Station. “Suspects go online, look for properties that are high-end, for sale and appear to be abandoned.”
He explained that the suspect who was hosting the party charged party-goers a fee to attend. The party had allegedly started as a pool party, but after an alleged forced entry, theft and vandalism began to occur.
Designer clothing, art, electronics, and a mounted Snow Leopard with a value of $250,000 were recovered through the warrants, and 16 individuals were arrested for burglary, trespassing, and grand theft. Included in the 16 arrests were three 18-year old male adults: Nickolas Koontz, Kevin Larios, and Andres Uribe of La Habra.
“They were actually bragging about the party,” said Murakami when commenting on the arrestees’ use of social media websites immediately after the party. “…showing themselves within the residence, showing themselves carrying some of the stolen property.” The attendees who used social media sites in this manner were unaware that they were helping authorities locate suspects more quickly.
Parents were embarrassed as they learned of their children’s involvement in the incident. Sheriff Lee Baca commented, “Why can’t people have a good time, if they’re going to have one, and at the same time respect property?” She added, “They need to learn a lesson that you can’t do this sort of thing.”
The courts have yet to determine how Radoi will be compensated for the loss.
Whittier Daily News: Teens accused of trashing, burglarizing La Habra heights home while owner was away