Car Theft Suspect Arrested, Stolen Vehicle Recovered

Published : Monday, May 15, 2017 | 5:20 AM

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Pasadena police officers arrested a car theft suspect and recovered a stolen vehicle after an automatic license plate reader mounted on their squad car alerted them as they were cruising in the area of Hill Avenue and Colorado Blvd. Saturday evening.

Lt. John Mercado said the officers arrested Eldin Del Mundo, 23, a transient who Mercado said is listed on probation for an earlier stolen vehicle case.

The recovered vehicle is a 2014 model Nissan Vesta, Mercado said.

The arrest and recovery occurred at about 6:45 p.m..

“We had officers patrolling the area of Hill and Colorado when their license plate reader notified them of a reported stolen vehicle that was in the parking lot of the Jack in the Box (a fast food restaurant at 1415 E. Colorado Blvd.),” Mercado said. “They set up surveillance and watched as the suspect left the restaurant and entered the car. They were able to stop him before he actually began to drive and arrested him without incident.”

The Pasadena Police Department has been using ALPR (automatic license plate reader) systems on their squad cars since the devices were introduced years ago. ALPR systems are computer controlled high speed camera systems that automatically capture an image of every license plate that comes into view.

ALPRs record data on each plate including the precise time, date and place it was encountered, and compare the data with the vehicle’s registration record and alerts about the vehicle, enabling law enforcement agents to determine on the spot whether a vehicle is stolen or is being sought for other reasons.

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