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Van Nuys Man Held in 80 Car Burglaries

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A Van Nuys man has been arrested on suspicion of breaking into more than 80 cars in Ventura County and stealing at least $20,000 worth of merchandise in a five-month burglary spree, the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department reported.

Raul Lopez Jimenez, 18, was being held on suspicion of burglary and possession of stolen goods, said Sheriff’s Detective Miguel Colon in Camarillo.

Jimenez was arrested Thursday morning when police discovered him hiding in a 1980 Datsun in Camarillo. A second suspect escaped when he fled over a wall and stole a car, Colon said.

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The men are suspected of breaking into cars in Camarillo, Oxnard, Simi Valley and Northridge since July, striking at least six to 10 cars in one night, Colon said. They burglarized 80 cars in Camarillo alone, including 20 in the past week, he said.

After breaking a rear passenger window or punching the lock, the burglars would steal the goods and sell them on the street, Colon said. Police have recovered at least $20,000 in stolen items so far, he said.

Police are still looking for a second suspect, whom they describe as a Latino man in his early 20s, about 5 feet, 6 inches tall and weighing about 150 pounds.

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