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UPDATE: Couple identified in selfie burglary case

Posted: August 21, 2014 10:58 a.m.
Updated: August 21, 2014 6:04 p.m.

A young man identified by relatives as Larry Beltran Jr. arrived at the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station on Thursday to say he is the male in the selfie. Signal photo by Austin Dave

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A couple depicted in a selfie that turned up in a burglary victim’s cloud database took the photo on a cellphone bought at a San Fernando swap meet, the man in the picture told Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station detectives Thursday.

“I’m here to get all this cleared up. I’ve been here twice in a row. They told me to, that’s why I’m here,” said a young man who entered the station with an aunt and was immediately mobbed by Los Angeles TV reporters.

Although sheriff’s deputies have not officially released the young man’s name, his relatives identified him as Larry Beltran Jr.

SCV Sheriff’s Station officials released selfie pictures of a young couple Wednesday afternoon. saying they were “persons of interest” in the burglary of a Santa Clarita home.

“He didn’t do anything wrong,” said Angie Cabrera, who identified herself as Beltran’s aunt during the impromptu interview in the lobby of the station. “I don’t see why they’re bugging him. I’m the one who bought the cellphones, not him. I gave it to him, so it’s my fault, regardless.”

Cabrera said she bought the cellphone at a swap meet in San Fernando, unaware that it was stolen.

“I didn’t know,” she told reporters. “But I don’t want my nephew’s face all over the place and have people look at him in a different way. I don’t think that’s right. It’s his face but I’m the one who gave him the phone.

“I feel bad for him,” she said.

The story about the happy-looking couple smiling from the database of the burglary victim caught the attention of the Los Angeles news media, which features the shots in frequent newscasts.

Santa Clarita Valley sheriff’s detectives confirmed Thursday they have identified both the man and the woman in the photos.

 


Among the items stolen from the home of a Santa Clarita woman on July 30 were electronic devices capable of taking photos, investigators said. Those photos apparently uploaded to the woman’s cloud data storage at some point after the burglary. The victim said she did not recognize the couple — hence the release of their photos.

Investigators made it clear in their initial release of the photos that the couple were “persons of interest,” and they were not accused of any crimes.

“We are grateful that the male depicted in the selfie photo reached out to us at our station,” Deputy Josh Dubin told reporters in front of the SCV Sheriff’s Station Thursday. The woman was identified by tips from the public, he said.

Investigators did not release the couple’s names.

“Right now, the male and female in the selfie are classified only as persons of interest,” Dubin said.

jholt@signalscv.com
661-287-5527
on Twitter @jamesarthurholt

 

Comments

leonardosobe: Posted: August 21, 2014 2:08 p.m.

Now check for fingerprints. Either way they received stolen property.


chefgirl358: Posted: August 21, 2014 2:18 p.m.

Leonardosobe, You are only charged with receiving stolen property if you took possession of it KNOWING it was stolen.


Unreal: Posted: August 21, 2014 2:19 p.m.

If you buy something used from a garage sale, swap meet, or Craig’s list and do not know it is stolen then it is not a crime.


Unreal: Posted: August 21, 2014 2:45 p.m.

On nbclosangeles.com the story says the parents went with the guy to SCV station yesterday but were told to come back today as the detective who handles this case had gone home. So they knew this and still gave the info to the SIGNAL to run their pictures today? Really a shame to smear them like this. We never seem to get the full story even when it is a local story.

His aunt, who also showed up to the station to help clear him from any wrongdoing, told deputies that she bought two phones for $80 from a man at a swap meet and gave one to her nephew.

The parents and the Aunt are demanding an apology for smearing and embarrassing this couple. I say they deserve an apology. --edited.


CostaMesaOrangeCounty: Posted: August 21, 2014 2:59 p.m.

Hopefully the authorities can nab the real crook(s) who burglarized the victim's home, but who can this couple sue for defamation? The police? The media? Someone has to be culpable in this. Bottom line: don't buy electronic items at swap meets. --edited.


chefgirl358: Posted: August 21, 2014 3:00 p.m.

Unreal,

I say they don't deserve an apology. If it were your stuff that was stolen would you want investigators to follow up promising leads or would you want them to worry about the potential suspect's feelings of embarrassment? Cops were doing their job, and I would sure as hell want them to release that info if it were my house that was burglarized. Just because the people came to the station and gave a statement, doesn't mean that any of what they said was true! It doesn't mean it wasn't true either, but cops can't just take everything people (especially persons of interest) tell them as fact.

The old standby, if the deal seems too good to be true, then it is. Who buys phones from some stranger at a swap meet and not an authorized retailer?


KLB: Posted: August 21, 2014 3:26 p.m.

Agreed. No apology necessary. How the hell else were the cops supposed to figure out who these two were? If their story is true, the cops should be able to track down the swap meet vendor and hopefully find out who he got the phones from.


Unreal: Posted: August 21, 2014 4:23 p.m.

They had already been identified by themselves, walking into the station on WEDNESDAY, not THURSDAY with his parents and his Aunt.

Maybe the real problem is the SIGNAL late as usual with the news.

Lt. Rob Hahnlein does not seem to have known they were turned away on WEDNESDSY and told to come back the next day.


LosRubios: Posted: August 21, 2014 4:55 p.m.

TWO phones for $80 one of which is evidently a smartphone as it was connected to the cloud to capture these pictures using its data service. If someone offered me such a screaming deal, this would likely trigger some degree of 'why is this so cheap? Are they stolen?' response. To be fair to the SCV sheriffs, they did say that there were three possibilities including the fact that the people in the photo had unwittingly purchased the stolen phone. That's why they didn't label them suspects, simply persons of interest. No apology by the SCV Sheriffs is necessary IMHO and the aunt needs to accept some responsibility for the outcome of her actions. I doubt the vendor will be at this week's swap meet in San Fernando and if they do show, they'll have a very hazy recollection of exactly where they got the phones from.


LosRubios: Posted: August 21, 2014 4:57 p.m.

And two iPhones for $80 at that... C'mon. Really? Doesn't seem fishy???


Unreal: Posted: August 21, 2014 5:38 p.m.

You can get some great deals on "used" phones. Lots of people upgrade every time a new phone comes out.

The Aunt did nothing more than buy a gift for her nephew. She just trusted the wrong person.


LosRubios: Posted: August 21, 2014 6:20 p.m.

Unreal , I just bought an Amazon Fire phone via Amazon as opposed to from AT&T and it was $700. A SINGLE older model iPhone 4S on Ebay (used) will still set you back somewhere between $150 and $200 and that's just for one phone, not two. I don't buy the 'innocent victim' story - 2 iPhones for $80 is too ridiculous to be legitimate.


timothymyers02: Posted: August 21, 2014 6:24 p.m.

What does Carlos think?


timothymyers02: Posted: August 21, 2014 6:28 p.m.

Unreal:

And the guy who sells DVD's in the supermarket parking lot out of a satchel for $3 has fully complied with all copyright and royalty laws!


AdamTwelve: Posted: August 21, 2014 6:30 p.m.

Unreal:

The aunt can be charged with Receiving Stolen Property. Not knowing it was stolen would be her defense, since a reasonable person would've seriously question and re-consider such purchase.

As for apology, hell no! The deal should be get arrested for Receiving or get the Sheriffs that "guy" you bought the iPhones from. She's dirty.

If there was a law for defacing your own eye brows, both women should also be arrested for that. And that's the truth.


KARENINVALENCIA: Posted: August 21, 2014 8:01 p.m.

Unreal: Signal wasn't late with the news. I read it yesterday...8/20. Search the site & you'll find that story. Don't blame the Signal because you didn't notice the story when it was 1st reported. Also...'update' means just that...he updated the story with new info. No apology is needed or owed to them. If you buy a cell phone...probably an Iphone since it went to a cloud from some guy for $40 then you're delusional if you think it isn't stolen. The only exception would be if you know the guy & saw him using the cell in the past.


bobforte: Posted: August 21, 2014 8:28 p.m.

I will let you know what RSP really is later. Please don't listen to Adamtwelve.


AdamTwelve: Posted: August 21, 2014 9:07 p.m.

And please listen to bobforte, who stated going 65 mph on a 50 mph speed limit posted road is OK! If you defend these eye brows, bob, I'm gonna have a fit.


NotSoAwesomeTown: Posted: August 22, 2014 12:35 a.m.

You know what I'D like to know? How is it these two - who weren't for sure criminals - got their pictures published almost instantly, while the guy who walked into Walmart on Kelly Johnson and activated 3 iPhones with MY IDENTITY, didn't get HIS picture in the Signal when they had security photos of him??? This friggin city. Unreal.


bobforte: Posted: August 22, 2014 12:52 a.m.

Adam started out his post OK saying the aunt's defense is she didn't know it was stolen. Just because she paid a low price for it doesn't mean she is not reasonable. She will not be charged with RSP. The prosecution has to prove she knew it was stolen. Just because she got it for a good price does not meet the proof the prosecution would need to file this charge.

And Adam, please go to traffic court or speak with real deputies or officers and you know I am correct about the speed thing.


AdamTwelve: Posted: August 22, 2014 1:28 a.m.

bobforte:

You may not be convicted for it, or the DA's office may throw it out.

But SCV Sheriffs can certainly arrest for it, especially if they discover dubious circumstances surrounding the story. It all depends how good the detectives are handling.

But you can certainly arrest for it, citing failure to make reasonable inquiry (due diligence), "the price was toooooooo good to be true".

The timeline of travel of the stolen property can also be cited for the arrest. Her arrest record, etc. An arrest can be made.


chefgirl358: Posted: August 22, 2014 1:58 a.m.

Adamtwelve,

No cop will arrest anyone who is compliant and without proof that the person is anything other than naive for rsp. The element of the crime is knowledge and/or intent, no d.a. on earth would file otherwise.

I asked a cop about what you said and he said no way, failure to make reasonable inquiry is something you invented. The element that has to be proven is that the person knew the item was stolen. --edited.


AdamTwelve: Posted: August 22, 2014 2:20 a.m.

chefgirl:

Knowledge can be met other ways, old beautiful eye brows, can say she didn't know it was stolen, but if detectives really wanted to, they can arrest base on the lack of due diligence on her part.

That's just arrest.

The DA's office will of course demand more. But the arrest here, as per the original comment, is to motivate her to implicate her San Fers boyfriend(s) for the burglary.

It's what you call old school policing.


AdamTwelve: Posted: August 22, 2014 2:25 a.m.

Basically, there's other ways to prove knowledge, is the point here.


ricketzz: Posted: August 22, 2014 8:52 a.m.

Who goes out without their phone? Why were the residents absent but their phones weren't?


Unreal: Posted: August 22, 2014 10:55 a.m.

Maybe they were old phones, which in part would explain the lower price for them.

Yes, people do sell stolen them at low prices. But some older people, including me, would not know what they should sell for. Just that I am told they are older phones that work and it would not sound that weird to me to get 2 phones for 80.00. Swap meets do have great deals anyway. As do garage sales which I just love. The nephew may wondered at the price, but the Aunt may not have known the price was too good to be true.


Unreal: Posted: August 22, 2014 11:30 a.m.

ricketzz: I meant to say that they might have left them at home because they were old phones.


chefgirl358: Posted: August 22, 2014 11:37 a.m.

It would sound weird to me to buy phones for that price at an unauthorized dealer. I assume most of us want the whole transaction completed at once - phone activation, contacts transferred, plus just knowing you're getting a new phone so everything is covered if there's a problem, etc. I personally don't know anyone who has ever purchased a phone from a private person (unless close friend or family member is getting rid of an older phone to upgrade). Every person I know, buys them from a store. I know this because those are common discussions where people discuss how much they paid at what store, the kind of plan they got, the rebate offered, etc.


shenanigans: Posted: August 22, 2014 11:57 a.m.

chefgirl358: It only sounds weird to not buy a phone from a retailer because we all live in Valencia. I have plenty of coworkers from Palmdale who would think we are the weird ones for paying full price for... well, anything.


LosRubios: Posted: August 22, 2014 12:08 p.m.

Unreal "Maybe they were old phones, which in part would explain the lower price for them."

The blue phone is an iPhone 5c - you can tell because it has the blue colored case and the 5c were the first iPhone models available with cases in colors other than black or white. That's a $200+ phone used. I can't tell which model the white one is, could be a 4, 4s or 5 but that too would be at least a $150-200 phone used.

They're both pretty recent phones.


AdamTwelve: Posted: August 22, 2014 12:25 p.m.

chefgirl:

In Santa Clarita, people go to Valencia mall for everything.

In the ghetto, like Sylmar, San Fernando and Pacoima (where many parts looks like Jalisco Mexico), they get their stuff
in Swapmeets, thru family members, friends, who get it from people who got it from Valencia mall.

The eye brows is a big clue that she's not just some regular female here, that innocently bought stolen items.

Visit the swapmeet here in SCV and then visit the swapmeet in San Fernando. I think the definition of swapmeet is also different. If you don't wanna go to SF swapmeet, go to the Palmdale one, more stolen items from SCV there.


Unreal: Posted: August 22, 2014 12:37 p.m.

AdamTwelve: You are really a piece of work. I own a very nice home 5+3 in a very nice neighborhood of SCV. I own this because I do NOT shop at the mall for items very often.

I love the SCV swap meet (although I don't go much anymore) and garage sales where I find vintage 1940's and 1950's pottery.

You are the one who is out of step with SCV. Most of the people in SCV from one side of the valley to the other are not as snotty as you sound. I have lived in this valley for decades and know most of the people are good neighbors and very down to earth. A few bad eggs, but still a very good town.

The girl is a beautiful girl and the guy is a very nice looking young man.

You are one of the bad eggs.


Rocketeer: Posted: August 22, 2014 2:33 p.m.

Just out of curiosity I checked on Ebay and it turns out people are selling full sets of iPhone retail packaging for under $10. The only possible use for that would be to dress up stolen phones for resale.

On an unrelated note I'm starting to wonder if, in some incredible coincidence, Unreal is actually the girl in this story. If it makes you feel any better, I don't see anything wrong with your eyebrows.


johnnyrock: Posted: August 22, 2014 3:30 p.m.

Everyone is so quick to judge....the couple did nothing wrong and everyone was being all rude and saying mean things about them. lol Rocketeer.


bobforte: Posted: August 22, 2014 4:18 p.m.

Adam really starting to show his true colors here.


Unreal: Posted: August 22, 2014 4:26 p.m.

I wish I was as young as this girl! That would be one major "do over".


AdamTwelve: Posted: August 22, 2014 5:17 p.m.

bobforte:

Don't tell me them eye brows don't look familiar. If she hasn't been arrested for RSP in the past, or her juvee days, I'd bet you her wrap sheet would include theft, fraud, sales in concert, the list goes on. And that would satisfy the "knowledge" element of RSP, that plus the 'too good to be true' price at the time of purchase.

RSP in many states, you arrest for mere possession, knowledge doesn't have to be met, but here in CA we use the reasonable person test, her wrap sheet plus the price equals knowledge.

As for her eye brows, SCV Sheriffs should contact the Hague and have them open a Crimes Against Humanity motion against her. Or at least misdemeanor vandalism.


Unreal: Posted: August 22, 2014 5:40 p.m.

AdamTwelve: You are a distasteful human being. I am glad you do not live in SCV proper. Stay in Acton please.

A lot of others I may disagree once in a while or even often but you are in a category all by yourself.

The rest of you have a good weekend.


AdamTwelve: Posted: August 22, 2014 5:51 p.m.

Unreal:

1). I'm not in Acton.

2). I'm right--well, 99.9% of the time, but here 100%.


ohhyaa: Posted: August 22, 2014 7:41 p.m.

Wait. Who's the lady with the super skinny eyebrows and the hideous eye make-up? Is she the one not currently on parole?


Baddog1: Posted: August 22, 2014 7:57 p.m.

She reminds me of the one on that Cable Towing Show about repo cars.


missyJk: Posted: August 22, 2014 8:41 p.m.

whose the nasty looking blonde did fuzzy eyebrows take hers? she needs a makeover at Sephora...did the $80 she spent come from her makeup fund?


Rocketeer: Posted: August 22, 2014 9:16 p.m.

"...I'd bet you her wrap sheet would include..."

It's actually "rap" sheet from the acronym "Record of Arrest and Prosecution" (RAP).

I'd hope that the police would investigate to see if anyone knowingly bought stolen property and maybe even try to solve the original burglary. But in our current society, the police usually just advise you to file an insurance claim and move on.

The sad fact is that even if someone was arrested and convicted, Jerry Brown's "catch and release" justice system guarantees no one will be punished. The Democrats have essentially switched us to the honor system when it comes to obeying the law.

The blonde woman with the interesting make-up is the aunt who bought the phone at the swap meet.


AdamTwelve: Posted: August 23, 2014 12:28 a.m.

Rocketeer:

Dude, all this time I thought it was 'wrap', had no idea it was an acronym! Thanks! Familiar with CHRS, NCIC, etc. RAP... huh, who knew.

As for not pursuing an RSP arrest to coax the actual burglary suspects, bigger depts would be more hungry, I assure you. Especially with a gang component, as evidenced by her eye brows.

The philosophy should be "not in my city", and "how can we make this arrest work", instead of "we can't arrest for this". So, instead of pressing her, they're gonna take her word for it and chase imaginary names she'd offer them of swapmeet vendors.

She's dirty.


chefgirl358: Posted: August 23, 2014 1:39 a.m.

Adam twelve, LASD is the largest sheriff's dept in the WORLD, so I don't know how much bigger you need it to be to be "hungry".

They might be dirty they might not, but you make some really baseless assumptions on how LASD is handling this, you, nor any of us, have no idea at all what they're doing right now. They could very well be getting roll back warrants to check out their pads for all we know.


AdamTwelve: Posted: August 23, 2014 1:48 a.m.

chefgirl:

It's happened before. Nothing's gonna happen. She's gonna provide them with imaginary names and she'll walk away scott free. Remember your LE contact last nite and what bobforte said, exactly, nothing's gonna happen.

It's called an informed opinion. Rocketeer is also correct, a lot of this comes from PC crap. CYA, if we arrest sexy eye brows for RSP we might get sued, that sort of thinking. Not saying it's Sheriffs-wide, some stations are proactive, some are pretty much de-active. Fact. --edited.


bobforte: Posted: August 23, 2014 9:33 a.m.

Wow!!!!

Can't wait for more crime stories to come out so we can read the wisdom of Adam.


AdamTwelve: Posted: August 23, 2014 11:30 a.m.

bobforte:

Better than your ability to differentiate between the basic speed law and absolute posted speed limits, bob. wink wink...


SCV123: Posted: August 24, 2014 10:58 a.m.

The aunt is evidently what happens when grown women take fashion cues from Honey Boo Boo.


bobforte: Posted: August 24, 2014 9:28 p.m.

Oh Adam. Where is that Acton sub station again?

How are those city officials helping out in your unincorporated area?


AdamTwelve: Posted: August 25, 2014 1:01 a.m.

bobforte:

All questions were answered in the other thread, bob.

But tell us more about the BASIC speed law and how that applies to posted speed limits? Try not to cut and paste from DMV this time though. wink wink...



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