Suspect woke resident, was caught a short time later by Taft Police

A would-be burglar who apparently turned off the power to a home he was breaking into was chased away by a resident then caught a short time later by Taft Police early Tuesday morning.

Thomas Byrd, 36, was arrested by officers a short time after they responded to a burglary in progress call at 2:39 a.m. in the 800 block of B Street.

The victim told police he was awakened by the alarm and noise from the blinds on the back door of his residence. He tried turn on the lights but there was no power.
He went outside to check the power when he encountered the suspect walking the side of his home.
“The suspect fled the area. Officers found the suspect turned off the power to the residence, removed a bedroom window screen and attempted to force open a window,” Aranda said.

Byrd tried to force open a rear door with tools when the alarm went off, the lieutenant said.

Police searched the area and found Byrd in the 600 block of Terrace Way.

“He matched the suspect description provided by the victim.

“He was positively identified by the victim in an in-field line up, “ Aranda said. “ Byrd was (also) found to be in possession of burglary tools and, and property he could not account for.”

Byrd was arrested and booked into the Taft City Jail for residential burglary, possession of burglary tools, and under the influence of a controlled substance, Aranda said.