L.A. Serial Burglar Gives Police Tips, Gets Lighter Sentence


Serial burglar Ignacio Pena Del Rio gave up his tools of the trade, and had six months shaved off his 7 1/2-year prison sentence, says the Los Angeles Times. Pena Del Rio, known as one of Los Angeles’ most industrious and prolific cat burglars until his arrest in 2006, agreed to an unusual request: He starred in a 70-minute video in which he disclosed his techniques for a Los Angeles Police Department training video.

In the unedited, documentary-style interview, Pena Del Rio covered subjects such as how he chose his victims and how he talked his way out of a jam, according the lead investigator on the case. “We let him ramble,” said detective Bill Longacre. “And he gave up a lot of good information.” Older victims in well-kept homes were an easy mark, not so much because they were vulnerable, Longacre said, but because he reasoned they accumulated more expensive things. Pena Del Rio sought out those who were angry and distrustful of institutions like banks, essentially the mattress-money set who he rightly bet would keep cash, precious metals, or other lucrative goods within easy striking distance. Even though he had access to more sophisticated tools like hydraulic pry bars, rappelling ropes and blowtorches, he used gloves and a screwdriver in most of his crimes.

Link: http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-thief13-2008aug13,0,2859310.story

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