Rookie Fountain Valley police officers arrested suspects early Friday in more than a dozen car break-ins during the previous night.
"They're on Cloud Nine and should be," said Lt. Mike Hanrahan of the new officers. "We're real proud. Our car burglaries have just gone sky high."
The first arrest came just after midnight. Officer Mark Eskridge was patrolling the Fountain Park Condominiums when he saw two men apparently breaking into a 4-wheel-drive truck, police said.
One man escaped over a nearby wall. George McCay, 20, of Westminster was arrested on suspicion of car burglary and possession of burglary tools and booked into Orange County Jail, police said. Police recovered a radar detector and a car stereo torn from the dash, Hanrahan said.
In a separate incident four hours later near 2nd Street and Hays River Circle, Officer Ron Garcia stopped a car leaving a residential area with its lights turned off. Inside the car, Garcia found a large amount of property believed to have been stolen in at least six car burglaries, Hanrahan said.
Lincoln Yee, 18, of Cerritos and two boys were arrested on suspicion of car burglary, possession of burglary tools and possession of stolen property, Hanrahan said.
The three apparently broke into the cars, mostly Volkswagens, by popping the door handles off with a screw driver, he said.