Trash bag burglar captured

LANCASTER – Two months ago, a resident snapped a cell phone picture of a man stealing trash from a neighbor’s yard and sent the photo to law enforcement.

The trash thief, Laniel Wilson, was arrested around 5 p.m., Thursday. Authorities said the 37-year-old also burglarized a nearby apartment, was in possession of stolen property, and is currently on felony probation for burglary.

Wilson was jailed for burglary and theft-related charges on $50,000 bail.

The following is the press report from the Lancaster Station:

 In April of this year, a concerned Lancaster citizen sent a picture of a male black adult holding a trash bag of recyclables that he had just stolen out of a neighbor’s yard to the Lancaster Station Burglary Suppression Team.

The citizen saw the male black stealing the bag of recyclables, and used his cell phone to take the male’s picture, which he then sent to the burglary team, along with a description of the items taken and the suspect.

On Thursday evening, (5-31-12), at 5 p.m., a member of the Burglary Suppression Team, while driving in the area of Avenue K and 20th Street West, saw the suspect depicted in the photo sent by the citizen. The suspect, identified as Laniel Wilson MB/37, was detained pending further investigation.

Follow up investigation conducted revealed that Wilson had been involved in a burglary of a nearby apartment, and he was subsequently arrested for residential burglary.

In addition, Wilson was found to be in possession of additional property that is suspected to be stolen. Wilson is also currently on felony probation for burglary.

He was booked at the Lancaster Sheriff’s Station for burglary and other theft related charges, and he is being held pending arraignment in court on $50,000.00 bail. The investigation is ongoing.

  5 comments for “Trash bag burglar captured

  1. ShadowCrestWatchers
    June 2, 2012 at 11:59 am

    This guy has been stealing recyclables from our neighborhood for the past 3 years. Our neighborhood was glad to find out that he was finally caught.

  2. FUNNY
    June 1, 2012 at 2:19 pm

    Thank you LASD for taking the trash off the street , please keep him no need to recycle Him

    • leon spinks
      June 1, 2012 at 3:46 pm

      Agreed! Thank you LASD. I can only imagine how many do-gooders saw deputies contacting this guy on the side of the road and said “don’t the cops have anything better to do than harass the poor homeless guy just trying to make an honest living by recycling cans?”

      • Nancy P.
        June 1, 2012 at 5:59 pm

        If Mr. Willson is the same guy from our neighborhood thefts, he carries a large leather bag with a long strap acrossed his chest. Sometimes he carries 2 bags. The bag had a laptop, rolling papers and other misc. in it on Monday when the Deputies searched him in the Food 4 Less parking lot. We dubbed him “The Recycle Thief”, since that’s what he was stealing all the time. Not from garbage cans. He was going in back yards…hmm, I guess I said that!

  3. Nancy P.
    June 1, 2012 at 1:11 pm

    I wonder if this is the same guy that our neighborhood has been taking pictures of for the last 2 years. He would walk into our neighborhood, walk up and down every street between J and Lancaster Blvd, disappearing off the sidewalk every few houses. He was looking over fences and I think checking to see who had dogs. The next day he would come back through and steal recycling bottles and cans. He was sneaky. People saw him all the time walking down the street with bags of bottles and can, looking like Santa Claus We have sent lots of pictures of him to the Public Safety Office and to the LASD, including pictures of him loading stuff in a black Nissan Ultima that showed the license plate. He would go over locked gates and if confronted say he was looking for a hose to get water.

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