A 20-year-old Franklin Farm man pleaded guilty last week to two counts of breaking and entering in connection with a rash of home burglaries, this spring, in Chantilly. When he is sentenced in September, he could receive as much as 10 years in prison.
The man is Cesar Perez of 3240 Tayloe Court. Fairfax County police believe that he and two others — who all live in or near the neighborhoods that were victimized — were the culprits.
The crimes occurred between March 5 and April 16 in the Franklin Glen, Chantilly Farms, Ox Hill and Legato Acres communities. Several homeowners left for work or vacation — only to come back and find that their houses had been broken into, their premises ransacked and many expensive items stolen.
BUT WHEN A NEIGHBOR heard glass breaking at the house next door and called police right away, the authorities were able to respond quickly and arrest Perez and two teen-agers.
One of the burglaries happened between April 12-16 at a home in the 13600 block of Brockmeyer Court in Chantilly's Ox Hill community. The owners had locked their house, April 12, and left for vacation. But on April 16, around 10:30 a.m., a neighbor's son checking on the home discovered the rear door to the back deck had been smashed out. Someone had rummaged through drawers and thrown them on the floor, and the refrigerator door was ajar. Police were called.
Returning home, the owners reported as missing: A pearl necklace, diamond earrings, amethyst ring, man's diamond-and-gold ring, JVC digital video camera, 50 state coins, rolls of coins in various denominations, a cashier's check made out to the homeowner, cash in $100 denominations, two gold Bulova watches, two gold money clips and gold cufflinks.
However, also on April 16 — at 10:17 a.m., shortly before the above burglary was discovered — a man in Legato Acres off Piney Branch Road heard glass breaking outside. He told police he'd seen two males breaking into his neighbor's house. A third person was waiting for them in a blue Toyota, but left before police arrived.
An Officer Doyle discovered a backyard gate to the house in question was partially open. He also noticed that the rear, sliding-glass door was smashed and then saw two males leave the house. They fled, but police eventually captured them.
DOYLE APPREHENDED PEREZ and found a money clip, loose coins and a Motorola pager on his person. Police charged Perez and the others with various counts of burglary, grand larceny and possession of burglary tools. Some of Perez' charges were later dropped but, last Tuesday, July 1, he appeared in Circuit Court and pleaded guilty to two counts of breaking and entering.
Defense attorney Ronald Lynch said his client came to the U.S., 15 years ago, from El Salvador, and was employed as a housepainter. Lynch also noted that Perez and his girlfriend have a 3-week-old baby.
Perez has about $15,000 worth of restitution to make but, after entering his guilty pleas, he was remanded to the custody of the sheriff. Afterward, Lynch said he was surprised that Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Michael Ben ' Ary insisted on having Perez' bond revoked, in light of all the money he owes. Judge M. Langhorne Keith set Perez' sentencing for Sept. 12.