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Crime Trackers: OVPD arrests gym thief who has been breaking into vehicles

Oro Valley, Ariz. – Oro Valley Police busted a man who was reportedly caught breaking into vehicles at a gym parking lot.

Martin Rodriguez, 21, broke into three different vehicles before he was caught.

Martin Rodriguez/ Oro Valley Police Department

Police said Rodriguez most likely had a system. They say thieves would sit in their vehicle in parking lots, look out the window and find out who is carrying items when they go inside the gym.

“Do they have their purse, do they have their gym bag?” OVPD Sgt. Carmen Trevizo said. “That’s just little pieces of information they’re gathering as they are sitting in the parking lot.”

On one occasion, Rodriquez targeted two girls. He saw them leave their jeeps without purses or gym bags. That was when he made his move.

“He gets into the jeep and even actually hits the brake lights when he gets into the jeep,” Trevizo said. “Once he is in there he starts looking for items to steal.”

He stole some credit cards and other items. When the victim finished her workout, she realized someone had stolen her purse. She then informed LA Fitness management.

“We were able to see which car actually broke into her,” LA Fitness manager, Jake Cain said. “We were able to give her that information so that she could file something.”

When the black Camaro returned the next day, Cain was ready. He went out and got the license plate number and called Oro Valley Police.

“That was very helpful in identifying and eventually making an arrest in this case,” Trevizo said.

The stolen credit cards were later used at the Foothills Mall by an underage female. She was not arrested, but her case will be presented to the county attorney’s office at a later date.

Police obtained a search warrant at his home. They found some of the stolen cards and purchases that were made with the cards, which were valued at least $2,000.

Rodriquez is charged with fraudulent use of a credit card, theft of a credit card, fraudulent schemes and artifices and trafficking of stolen property.

Police advise residents to lock your doors and do not leave valuables in plain sight. When you are going to the gym, take your purse or wallet into the gym and place it in a locker.

Lupita Murillo

Lupita Murillo is an investigative reporter. She is part of the Digging Deeper team that uncovers important issues focusing on crime that affects the community.

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