Investigators in Laguna Woods are looking for additional burglary victims who may have been targeted by a man who was arrested last week for allegedly posing as an air conditioning maintenance worker at a retirement community.
Aaron Thrasher, 28, of Mission Viejo was arrested Saturday on several felony and misdemeanor charges including burglary, possession of burglary tools and property theft from the elderly, the Orange County Sheriff's Department said in a released statement.
According to police, Thrasher told residents of Laguna Woods Village he was a city employee sent to their homes to clean the air conditioning equipment. Once inside, Thrasher allegedly went from room to room stealing items including jewelry and checks.
“Crime is a problem here, because everybody knows it’s easy pickings because of the elderly,” said Les Rutty, a Laguna Woods resident and theft victim.
Police were tipped off to Thrasher's activity after residents reported a suspicious man trying to get into their homes.
Abigail Lopez, who works at a retirement community, said it was disappointing people would try to target and take advantage of older people.
“That’s really sad," she told KTLA. "These people really trust that they’re going to get their things, and then they turn around and they just steal their stuff. That’s messed up.”
Thrasher was being held on $350,000 bail.
Ten victims have been identified so far, but investigators believe there are more.
Investigators said they have recovered several items from local pawn shops that they are trying to return to their rightful owners.
Anyone who believes they might have been a victim is encouraged to call OCSD investigators at 714-647-7000.