Police: 2 charged after stealing from unlocked vehicles in Trumbull

Photo of Tara O'Neill

TRUMBULL — Two men described by police officials as having “lengthy criminal records” were arrested after they allegedly stole from unlocked vehicles in town, police said.

Joseph Amaral, 21, of Sylvan Street in Bridgeport, and 24-year-old Jesie Rojas, of Howe Street in New Haven, were taken into custody on Edison Road around 1 a.m. Friday after a resident called police to report that the two men stole “valuables from unlocked cars that were parked in nearby driveway,” according to Lt. Brian Weir.

“A resident, who had contacted the Trumbull police, reported that they had received an alert on their security system, and then observed the men walking near the resident’s vehicles that were parked in their driveway,” Weir said. “An interior light to a vehicle parked in a neighbor’s driveway had also been observed to be turned on.”

Officers got to the area and found Amaral and Rojas walking in the rain on Edison Road, away from the resident’s property, Weir said.

When the officers stopped the men to ask why they were out in the early morning, the men told them they “wanted to get out of the house and go for a walk,” Weir said. He said the officers found a change purse in Amaral’s pocket and several other items in his pocket and in a backpack he was carrying.

The officers checked the area and found several other unlocked vehicles parked in nearby residential driveway that had also been rummaged through, Weir said.

Amaral was charged with sixth-degree larceny and two counts of burglary. Rojas was charged with conspiracy to commit burglary.

“Both men have had numerous run-ins with law enforcement and have lengthy criminal records,” Weir said.

File photo of the exterior of Trumbull Police headquarters, in Trumbull, Conn., taken on Jan. 14, 2016.

File photo of the exterior of Trumbull Police headquarters, in Trumbull, Conn., taken on Jan. 14, 2016.

Ned Gerard / Hearst Connecticut Media

Amaral’s criminal history includes arrested on charges of burglary, criminal mischief and probation violations, Weir said.

Weir said Amaral was also found to have two active warrants for his arrest when officers took him into custody.

One warrant was issued by the Troop I of the Connecticut State Police on charges of escape and third-degree burglary. The second warrant was issued by the Department of Corrections Parole Fugitive Unit on charges of escape and third-degree burglary.

Weir said Rojas’ criminal history includes arrested on offenses of theft of a firearm, risk of injury to a minor, assault, larceny and criminal trespass.

“The Trumbull police would like to remind all residents to always lock your vehicles, remove all packages and valuables, and never leave their keys inside,” Weir said. “As always, please report anything suspicious as it occurs.”

Anyone with information about these incidents, or who wants to report suspicious behavior, can call Trumbull police at 203-261-3665.