July 18, 2014

Man charged with vehicle burglaries, fraud

A local man is in jail charged with burglarizing two cars and using credit cards he stole from the cars at several local businesses.

On the morning of July 16th, the victims called the Sheriff’s Office to report their two cars had been burglarized overnight. Deputy Lazaro Valdes responded to their home on Driftwood Drive in Key Haven to take a report. The victims told him a wallet was stolen from each car; in the wallets were credit cards and various pieces of personal identification. The victims checked with their credit card companies and discovered several cards had been used at several different businesses in Key West overnight. One card had also been used to pay for a taxi ride.

Deputy Valdes contacted the taxi company to speak with the driver who accepted the card as payment. The driver told him he’d dropped a man off on Mars Lane on Geiger Key. He gave a description of the man to the deputy. Lower Keys detectives were assigned to investigate. Detective David Cruz went to a bar in Key West where the suspect had used one of the cards. He obtained surveillance video of the suspect at the bar. His description matched the description given by the taxi driver. In the video, the suspect was wearing an Aeropostle T-shirt and had tattoos on his forearms.

Detectives Cruz and John Underwood went with Deputy Valdes to Mars Lane where they began knocking on doors in the area where the taxi driver said he’d dropped the suspect off. At a residence on Star Lane, they found a man who recognized the suspect’s description as his roommate, 22 year old Eric Pazian. Pazian was sleeping, so they woke him to ask him what he’d been doing the night before. He denied committing the crimes, but on the floor of his room they found an Aeropostle  T-shirt matching the one in the video; they also found credit cards belonging to the victims. Pazian was arrested and booked into jail.

Further investigation turned up a vehicle Pazian had been using, parked in the parking lot of a downtown restaurant. The car belonged to Pazian’s roommate, who gave Detective Sgt. Donnie Catala and Detective Dave Chavka permission to search it. Inside, detectives found the rest of the credit cards and personal identification stolen from the two victims. They also found two bottles of liquor Pazian had purchased with a stolen card. Video surveillance from other businesses obtained by Detective Chavka also showed Pazian using stolen credit cards to make purchases. Pazian has been charged with two counts of vehicle burglary and multiple counts of grand theft, theft, credit card fraud and criminal use of another person’s identification without their consent. 

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