HomeTop StoriesFive charged in connection with burglaries of Asian-American families in Washington state

Five charged in connection with burglaries of Asian-American families in Washington state

Five men have been charged in connection with a recent series of burglaries in western Washington that appeared to target the Asian American community.

The suspects, who were arrested late last month, were charged Wednesday with residential burglary and possession of stolen property after allegedly attacking Asian American homes in Kirkland, King and Snohomish counties. They are accused of stealing tens of thousands of dollars in currency, jewelry and other valuables from more than 17 burglarized homes, according to a Kirkland Police Department news release.

The suspects, Lamar E. Curtis, Londra D. Jackson, Kenji Christopher Crutchfield, Eric Darnell Netterville Jr. and Aramis Davae Williams, had no attorneys listed in a King County Court database as of Monday. The five defendants will be arraigned next week, when they are expected to enter their initial pleas.

Casey McNerthney, communications director at the King County Prosecuting Attorney Office, said in an email that the charges are based on initial information provided to prosecutors, but that any additional information, “including possible hate crime allegations,” will be assessed.

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Charging documents say the suspects have “no significant ties” to the area and traveled to Washington for the purpose of committing the crimes. Members of the Asian American communities began contacting police about home burglaries in February, the news release said. Later that month, surveillance cameras and an eyewitness were able to capture images of three suspects, in addition to the license plate of a rental car linked to a burglary. It led to the identification of a suspect from Southern California with a lengthy criminal history, the statement said. After a two-month investigation, authorities said they were able to obtain a search warrant for a short-term rental property in the city of Redmond.

“Investigators discovered that the suspect regularly traveled between California and Washington, using short-term rental properties to change locations,” the release said. “The suspects also rented cars and exchanged license plates with stolen ones.”

A multi-agency team attended the Redmond address and arrested the five men. Police also found equipment they believe was used to outwit home security features, finding more than $17,000 in cash and multiple luxury bags.

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The suspects are being held in the King County Jail.

This article was originally published on NBCNews.com

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