Squatter used empty Montclair home to hide stolen goods
on May 6, 2011
The Oakland Police Department released a statement this morning describing an unusual twist in the department’s ongoing efforts to crack down on burglaries — on May 3 an officer responding to a trespassing call regarding an unoccupied home on Valley View Boulevard in Montclair found a squatter living inside with what appeared to be a vast collection of stolen items taken during at least 10 local burglaries.
According to the press release, officers recovered two van loads of stolen merchandise including jewelry, computers, televisions, tools and personal documents. The items are believed to have been stolen from homes in Oakland as well as nearby cities including Berkeley, Piedmont and Kensington.
OPD Officer Malcolm Miller arrested the man found living illegally in the home, who has been identified as 41-year-old Lee Crago. According to the OPD, Crago has prior convictions for burglary and possession of stolen merchandise.
Problem solving officers who have been working on a burglary suppression project in the Montclair area are now working to identify the stolen items, which the department will try to return to their owners.
Anyone with further information is asked to call the Oakland Police Criminal Investigation Division at 510-238-3326.
Oakland North is an online news service produced by students at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism and covering Oakland, California. Our goals are to improve local coverage, innovate with digital media, and listen to you–about the issues that concern you and the reporting you’d like to see in your community. Please send news tips to: email@example.com.