Theft of Bulldozer Leads to Arrests

Theft of Bulldozer Leads to Arrests
Photo: Sam Reyes and Vanessa Lopez

Ventura County – “Never leave your earth-moving equipment unlocked” may become a popular law enforcement admonition if car thieves decide to start targeting larger prey after learning how a clever couple almost got away with a major score.

According to Ventura County Sheriff’s Department spokesman Sgt. Vince Alvarez, on June 17, 2019 the owner of a Caterpiller brand “mini-dozer” arrived at a construction worksite in the City of Fillmore to discover his heavy machinery missing. The theft of the tractor was promptly reported to the VCSD and the Fillmore Investigations Unit took over the case.


stolen bulldozer

Detectives soon learned that the stolen tractor was equipped with a GPS tracking device and traced it to a residential location in Phoenix, Arizona.

Working collaboratively with law enforcement in Phoenix, VCSD detectives learned that 42-year-old Oxnard resident Sam Reyes and 40-year-old Oxnard resident Vanessa Lopez had removed the bulldozer from its Santa Paula job site and then posted it for sale online. A buyer responded to the internet posting, paid cash for the unit, and then transported it to Phoenix.

After contacting the unwitting buyer, detectives traced the transaction back to Reyes and Lopez in Oxnard. On the morning of June 25, 2019, both suspects were contacted at their residence, taken into custody, and transported to Ventura County Jail where they were booked on charges of grand theft auto, obtaining property under false pretenses, conspiracy, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Photos: Courtesy Ventura County Jail Booking

Theft of Bulldozer Leads to Arrests was last modified: July 9th, 2019 by admin
Categories: Ventura

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