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Chino man arrested in purse theft at military funeral

July 20, 2012 |  9:14 am

A Chino man was in custody Friday after he was arrested on suspicion of breaking into an SUV while posing as a mourner at a funeral for a former Marine and Vietnam War veteran, Glendora police said.

Officials said Jose Angel Abrajan, 31, was arrested Thursday on suspicion of grand theft after authorities traced his car to a Chino home, where they served a search warrant. Detectives recovered "a large amount" of stolen property, including purses and cellphones, authorities said.

A significant collection of Red Box rental movies were also found at the home, officials said. Detectives said they suspect that Abrajan used stolen credit cards to rent the movies, which will allow them to locate other possible victims.

After the funeral, the daughter of the late former Marine discovered her purse had been stolen from her unlocked car, authorities said. The suspect was seen in the background of photographs taken during the funeral, breaking into the SUV, they said.

"Talk about a brazen crime for this guy to do what he did," said Tim Staab, spokesman for the Glendora Police Department.

Hours later, Abrajan was seen in a surveillance video buying food with the woman’s stolen credit card at a local In-N-Out, police said.

At the time of arrest, Abrajan was on probation for possession of stolen property, officials said. He was being held Friday on $45,000 bail.

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-- Melissa Leu
twitter.com/MelissaLeu

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