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Suspect arrested in rash of burglaries of unoccupied downtown L.A. buildings

December 23, 2010 |  2:47 pm


A 50-year-old Nevada man was arrested Thursday at the Garfield Building in downtown Los Angeles in connection with a rash of burglaries in unoccupied buildings, where hundreds of thousands of dollars in copper wiring and other precious metals were stripped and stolen, police said.

David Gardner was arrested on the seventh floor of the building as SWAT officers searched the area, police said. Authorities believe other suspects are involved. 

Staff for the owners of the Garfield Building at 8th and Hill Streets heard sounds coming from inside some floors of the structure Thursday morning and then spotted wet footprints before alerting LAPD, said Lt. Paul Vernon of the Los Angeles Police Department.

Investigators believe the thieves may have stripped copper from the Commercial Exchange Building across the street. They said it would cost about a $1 million to replace the copper.


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Photo: David Gardner is taken into custody by an LAPD Police officer on December 23, 2010. Credit: Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times