Burglars found under warranty

Andres Hernandez, 20, and a 17-year-old juvenile might have inadvertently turned themselves in when they turned in a stolen computer, still under warranty, to the Toshiba Company.

"When that happened, it generated an e-mail to the victim," said Detective Bon Stewart, of the Ashland Police Department.

Stewart said the stolen computer was one of the items taken from an Ashland home in a recent rash of burglaries. Hernandez and the juvenile have been charged with burglarizing six Ashland homes, including one on Vista Street that was hit twice. Police said the two are accused of stealing more than $20,000 worth of goods from homes in Ashland.

"We have additional evidence against him," said Stewart, who declined to comment on what that evidence might be. "We estimate that he's probably good for more than we arrested him for."

He added, "The investigation isn't over. There were other people involved in this. We had surveilled his house for a week and a half."

Hernandez and the juvenile, who both moved from Hawaii recently, were evidently using the stolen goods to decorate their new house on 644 E. Main St., just a few blocks up the road from the Ashland Police Department.

"They've only lived here a couple of months," Stewart said. "They were basically furnishing their apartment with other people's stuff."

Police said they had a stolen 60-inch, flat screen television set up in their living room and a slightly smaller, flat screen TV sitting behind that when they served a search warrant at 7:30 on Wednesday morning.

"We woke them up," said Stewart. "It went smoothly."

Stewart said both Hernandez and the juvenile made some admissions of guilt, but he would not say what they admitted to.

Hernandez worked at a T-Mobile cellular phone distributor in Medford. He said police "haven't ruled it out" that he may have used information he obtained at his job to know which houses in Ashland had goods worth stealing."

"We are looking into that," Stewart said.

Although these suspected burglars were arrested, another house in Ashland, this one on Alicia Avenue, was broken into during the day on Wednesday. Reported stolen was a $2,000 laptop computer, two digital cameras and a cellular phone.

Staff writer can be reached at 482-3456 x. 226 or .

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