Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department

Man Accused of Stealing 11 Cars During Policy to Limit Jail Overcrowding Amid Pandemic

Anyone who may have been a victim in a series of car thefts is urged to notify authorities.

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Authorities Tuesday urged people to call them if they were victimized by a suspect who allegedly stole at least 11 vehicles during a zero-bail policy designed to limit jail overcrowding during the pandemic.

Jose Enrique Esquivel, 24, is "a prolific car thief who victimized vehicle owners with modest incomes," Los Angeles County Sheriff's Deputy Trina Schrader said.

Esquivel has been arrested and remains in custody, Schrader said.

"The victims identified to date reside in the areas of southeast Los Angeles County, including the city of Los Angeles," she said. "Suspect Esquivel showed little regard for the owners of these vehicles, who many times depended on these stolen vehicles as their sole means of transportation. The suspect is also accused of exploiting the modification to the Los Angeles County Bail Schedule during his crime spree, while the County endured the statewide COVID-19 emergency where most crimes were designated to have zero bail."

Esquivel was arrested for stealing at least 11 vehicles during the period of March 30 to June 23, she said.

Anyone who believes they might be an additional victim of the crime spree was urged to call 800-299-8727.

Copyright CNS - City News Service
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