Police find gun in burglary suspects' car

A shotgun found under the passenger seat of a car pulled over by police led to three arrests in connection with a string of burglaries, the Newport Beach Police Department said Wednesday.

Christian Whitaker, 21, of Lake Elsinore, Brittany Whitaker, 19, of Murrieta, and Kelsea Blackburn, 20 of Oceanside were arrested on suspicion of residential burglary. They were taken into custody less than a day after a Jan. 9 burglary spree in Newport Beach.

Officers pulled the three over for a traffic stop at Dover Drive and Norfolk Lane on Friday afternoon and noticed the firearm, police said in a news release.

According to police, the shotgun had been stolen the previous night. When officers searched the car, they found thousands of dollars in stolen property, including computers, cell phones and other electronic equipment, credit cards, checkbooks, a wallet and a purse, the department said.

In each home burglary, the intruders got in through an unlocked door, and in at least two cases, residents were home while the burglars grabbed valuables, police said.

Each suspect is being held on $50,000 bail, police said.

NBPD asks that anyone with more information contact Det. Tracy McKenzie at (949) 644-3761 or the department's hotline, (800) 550-NBPD. Tips can be given anonymously.

— Jeremiah Dobruck

Twitter: @jeremiahdobruck

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