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Kirkland Police nab five suspects in South Asian community burglaries

During the operation, authorities confiscated equipment believed to be utilized for countersurveillance and bypassing home security measures. Additionally, stolen items, cash exceeding US$17,000

Kirkland Police nab five suspects in South Asian community burglaries / Kirkland Police Department

The Kirkland Police Department have apprehended five individuals suspected of targeting Indian American and South Asian communities in a string of burglaries spanning over two months. The Kirkland Police Department (KPD) announced the arrests, revealing that the suspects are allegedly responsible for orchestrating 17 burglaries within Kirkland, Washington state.

Concerns raised by members of the Eastside Indian American and South Asian communities in February prompted the investigation. Residents reported an increase in racially-motivated burglaries affecting their neighborhoods. Analysis of crime data by Kirkland authorities supported these claims, indicating a potential surge in targeted burglaries.

Surveillance footage and eyewitness accounts in late February provided crucial evidence, capturing images of the suspects and the license plate of a rental vehicle linked to them. Notably, one of the suspects, hailing from Palmdale, California, possessed an extensive criminal record as a convicted felon. Investigators discovered that he frequently traveled between California and Washington, utilizing short-term rental properties to evade detection.

The group allegedly engaged in tactics such as renting vehicles and replacing license plates with stolen ones. Following the evidence trail, law enforcement zeroed in on a short-term rental property in Redmond. A search of the premises yielded the arrest of the five adult suspects, all originating from Southern California. Charges have been filed against them for burglaries committed in Kirkland, King County, and Snohomish County.

During the operation, authorities confiscated equipment believed to be utilized for countersurveillance and bypassing home security measures. Additionally, stolen items, cash exceeding US$17,000, and multiple designer bags were recovered from the rental property. The suspects have been detained at King County Jail pending further legal proceedings.

“This is an impactful and successful outcome for our community,” said Kirkland Police Chief Cherie Harris. “Thank you to our community members for trusting law enforcement with your story and for all our community members’ assistance along the way.  And I also want to send a big thank you to the Lynnwood, Bothell, and Bellevue Police Departments for their critical assistance and collaboration in this multi-jurisdictional investigation.”

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