Burglar Arrested After Breaking Into 2nd Encino Home to Use Cellphone; 2nd Suspect at Large: LAPD

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Donte Caldwell is seen in an undated booking photo released Feb. 19, 2020, by the Los Angeles Police Department.
Donte Caldwell is seen in an undated booking photo released Feb. 19, 2020, by the Los Angeles Police Department.

One burglar was on the loose and a second suspect with prior convictions was arrested following a break-in earlier this week in Encino, authorities said Wednesday.

Officers were called around 5:20 p.m. Monday regarding a burglary in progress on the 15500 block of Moorpark Street, according to Officer Mike Lopez with the Los Angeles Police Department.

Donte Caldwell, a 27-year-old Los Angeles resident, was able to evade officers chasing him on foot from the scene and forcibly entered another home a few blocks away, on the 4800 block of Orion Avenue, LAPD said in a news release.

Caldwell then used the resident’s cellphone to call a friend, but the resident was able to contact police, who responded and arrested Caldwell, officials said.

A perimeter was set up in the neighborhood, and officers and K-9s spent hours searching the area for a second person seen with Caldwell, Lopez said. But that man remained outstanding Wednesday.

Police search an Encino neighborhood following a burglary on Feb. 17, 2020. (Credit: KTLA)
Police search an Encino neighborhood following a burglary on Feb. 17, 2020. (Credit: KTLA)

Investigators did not say what, if anything, was taken from the Moorpark Street home.

Caldwell was convicted in two previous burglary cases and has a history of involvement with so-called “knock-knock” crews, according to LAPD.

In 2012, he was sentenced to six years in prison for a burglary series targeting homes in Encino, Northridge and Monrovia, the department said. Following his release, he was arrested again and sentenced in 2016 to 18 years in prison for incidents in the Pacific Palisades and Ventura County.

Caldwell was released early last August, and detectives are now looking into his activity since that time.

Investigators allege the crews Caldwell has worked with are associated with the Crips.

Inmate records show the suspect remained in custody Wednesday. No court date had been scheduled.

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