Suspects Arrested at Santa Paula Construction Site for Attempted Theft of Tractor

Ventura County Sheriff Department – Incident Press Release

Two Oxnard residents were arrested for charges related to stealing a tractor from a construction site in the unincorporated area of Santa Paula.

The victim of the crime was completing a construction project in the area of Briggs Road and the 126 Highway. The development involved heavy machinery which included a “CAT” mini-dozer tractor. During the weekend of 06/14/19, the victim parked the construction equipment at the job site and returned on 06/17/19. When the victim returned, he discovered the tractor was gone.

The tractor was equipped with a GPS device which indicated the unit was in Phoenix, Arizona.

Detectives worked in conjunction with authorities in Phoenix to track the equipment to a residence. Based on their investigation in Phoenix, detectives were able to identify Sam Reyes and Vanessa Lopez as the primary suspects in the case. Detectives learned that Reyes and Lopez stole the tractor from the job site in Santa Paula. The suspects created a post on the website “OfferUp” which is used to sell various products. A buyer answered the advertisement and met with the suspects near the location of the theft. The buyer provided the suspects cash for the tractor and then proceeded to Phoenix.

Investigators discovered that Reyes and Lopez lived in the Oxnard area. On 06/25/19, detectives went to their residence and located both suspects.

They were arrested and booked into the Pre-Trial Detention Facility in Ventura for the following charges:

Sam Reyes, 42 year old Oxnard resident: 487 (d)(1) PC- grand theft auto, 532 (a) PC- obtaining property under false pretenses, 182 (a)(1) PC- conspiracy, and 11364 (a) HS- possession of drug paraphernalia and an out of county warrant for theft.

Vanessa Lopez 40 year old Oxnard resident: 487 (d)(1) PC- grand theft auto, 532 (a) PC- obtaining property under false pretenses, and 182 (a)(1) PC- conspiracy.

Detectives are seeking help from the public who may have made a purchase from Reyes and Lopez on “OfferUp” or by any other means. If so, please contact Detective Bill Meixner at this phone number, (805) 947-9391


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