PASCO -- A 28-year-old man who allegedly was interrupted while trying to steal about 2,800 feet of insulated copper wire scrapped from an irrigation circle faces trial Aug. 25.
Ramon Galvez Jaimes of Pasco pleaded innocent Tuesday in Franklin County Superior Court to second-degree theft.
The Franklin County Sheriff's Office was called May 9 about a theft in progress in a field at Crestloch Road and Highway 395. Deputy Mark Boyer arrived to find an empty green Jeep Cherokee and a red utility trailer.
The Jeep and trailer were backed up to the property owner's scrap pile. The cable for an electric winch, which was hooked up to the tongue of the trailer, was attached to a pile of control wire, court documents said. The wire was partially loaded onto the bed of the utility trailer, documents said.
Never miss a local story.
"It appeared the suspect had been interrupted during the theft," sheriff's Detective Lee Barrow wrote in court documents.
Owner Edward Ochoa reportedly told Boyer that the Jeep had been on his property earlier in the day. A man and woman were inside and asked Ochoa for a person by name, court documents said. Ochoa said he didn't recognize the name, and the Jeep drove away.
Deputies found a bill of sale in the Jeep for Jaimes and learned he had sold scrap copper wire just days before at a recycling center, documents said. He allegedly was then driving the same Jeep.
Ochoa picked Jaimes out of a photo montage as being the man on his property that day before the wire theft. No one had permission to be on his property and take the wire, which has an estimated value of $1,200.
Jaimes is being held on $5,000 bail.
California man sentenced to prison in jewelry heist
PASCO -- A California man was sentenced to six years and five months in prison for stealing more than $9,000 in jewelry from a Pasco store.
Eduardo Fajardo-Casillas, 31, pleaded guilty to being one of the gun-toting robbers in the October 2008 crime.
Three men reportedly had been "casing" La Joyeria Alex store just before going into the North Fifth Avenue business, court documents said. The suspects went into the store two separate times before walking in at 11:47 a.m. and telling the owner he was being robbed.
The front door then was locked as two guns were pointed at the victim.
Fajardo-Casillas grabbed two counter jewelry displays and one box display after another suspect loaded a bullet into his gun's chamber and threatened the owner, documents said.
Fajardo-Casillas and his accomplices later were arrested in the Yakima Valley on unrelated crimes.
In addition to the new guilty plea to first-degree robbery, his criminal history includes two convictions each for first-degree robbery and theft of a motor vehicle. He must help pay $7,059 in restitution to La Joyeria Alex.
Pasco man charged in indecent liberties case
PASCO -- A 35-year-old man is accused of inappropriately touching a prepubescent boy three times over a two-month period.
Jose de Jesus Reveles Plata of Pasco pleaded innocent to indecent liberties, a felony. The charge states that Reveles Plata caused the victim "to have sexual contact with him by forcible compulsion."
Child Protective Services first called Pasco police on June 18 about an alleged incident. Through the investigation, officers learned Reveles Plata had grabbed the boy over his clothes and ordered him to try to whistle, court documents said.
Reveles Plata had told the boy, "it was a game they played in Mexico," documents said.
His trial is set for Aug. 18.
* Kristin M. Kraemer: 509-582-1531; firstname.lastname@example.org