SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -- Santa Barbara police arrest two men on suspicion of multiple burglaries on Wednesday.
Santa Barbara police arrested Luis Octavio Soto, 35, and Robert Xavier Arzate, 24, both from Carpinteria for multiple burglary charges.
On Wednesday, detectives executed a search and arrest warrant in Caprinteria for Soto and Arzate after a month-long investigation.
In their investigation, detectives discovered that Soto and Arzate had committed at least seven burglaries within south Santa Barbara County.
Investigators say both took advantage of the COVID-19 business closures and targeted elementary schools, community centers, medical offices and financial offices.
Soto and Azrate were said to use advanced techniques to enter a number of businesses and avoid detection.
Police say they suspect more burglaries will be reported after businesses reopen.
During the execution of the search warrant, police recovered stolen property including laptops from elementary schools.
Police also found a large number of burglary tools including lock picking equipment, crow bars, bolt cutters, vehicle lockout tool kits and kitchen utensils improvised into devices to open door latches.
The SBPD Property Crimes Unit reminds businesses and residents of ways to decrease their likelihood of being victimized.
Police recommends the following measures to keep businesses safe:
- Installing extra lighting and visible security cameras.
- Proper security measures on any exterior door, especially if it is hidden from public view.
- Ensure that exterior doors are protected with a deadbolt and that both the latch and bolt are covered by the door jamb or by a metal guard.