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A second arrest has been made in connection with the theft of thousands of dollars in gifts from a charity’s storage unit in unincorporated Martinez late last month, Contra Costa County sheriff’s officials said today. Frank Mireles, 55, was arrested on Saturday at his home in the first block of Morello Avenue in Martinez. Mireles was taken into custody a day after 38-year-old Jason Critez, also of Martinez, was arrested in the case, according to the sheriff’s office.
The pair is accused of burglarizing the warehouse of the charity Christmas for Everyone, which reported the theft on Feb. 25 at the building in the 1800 block of Shell Avenue. The thieves stole about $60,000 worth of property including nearly 70 tables, 100 chairs, as well as tools, toys, coats and barrels filled with other gifts, according to the charity’s director, Mary Perez. On Friday, detectives served a search warrant at a home in the 4200 block of Via De Flores in Martinez that netted more than 30 items that were allegedly stolen from the warehouse.
Crites was booked into county jail on suspicion of burglary and felony vandalism, while Mireles was arrested a day later on suspicion of burglary, possession of stolen property and felony vandalism, sheriff’s officials said. Crites and Mireles are believed to be the only two suspects in the case, according to the sheriff’s office. Investigators said more than half of the property that was stolen has been recovered, but some people may have unknowingly purchased stolen items at flea markets or via other means.
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