General Crime

Four Construction Workers Capture, Hold Down Burglary Suspect for Police in Palo Alto

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Four construction workers on Saturday captured and subdued a burglary suspect who fought with them following the theft of an iPod from a worktable in Palo Alto, a police spokesman said today. Palo Alto police received a 911 call at about 11 a.m. Saturday about a burglary in progress at a commercial building at 260 Sheridan Ave. in Palo Alto and that witnesses were holding down the suspect, police Officer Sean Downey said.

When officers arrived, four construction workers were restraining the suspect, later identified as Keneth Dale Stepp, 22, of San Jose, Downey said. The workers told police that the suspect had earlier gone into the basement of an office complex where they had been doing demolition work with a jackhammer. One of the workers reported witnessing the suspect stealing the iPod from the worktable and attempting to flee, Downey said. The workers chased after the suspect, caught him in a hallway and started escorting him back upstairs when he began to fight with them in an attempt to escape, Downey said.

The workers restrained the suspect until officers arrived, Downey said. Two of the workers and the suspect suffered minor cuts and bruises during the altercation, including a small abrasion to one worker from broken glass from a narcotics pipe the suspect had in his possession, Downey said. No one required medical attention, Downey said. Police searched the suspect and found he possessed a small amount of methamphetamine, a key to a locked restroom in the complex that had been stolen from an office and a round of ammunition for a handgun, Downey said.

Officers arrested Stepp on suspicion of burglary and possession of stolen property, narcotics and handgun ammunition by a prohibited person, all felonies, and misdemeanor possession of narcotics paraphernalia, Downey said. Police returned the iPod to its owner, Downey said.

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