"As they walked past my car and down my driveway, I took a photo of them."
On March 30, Abbey Knight (not her real name) saw two young men in a white Chrysler minivan circling her cul-de-sac at about 1:00 p.m. as she loaded her kids into her car.
“They looked into my garage as they passed by,” said Knight. “They then waited for a while at the end of our street. It felt like they were waiting to see if I was coming or going. Once I got in my car, I noticed they turned right at the end of my street onto Pebble Beach Drive.”
At a stoplight on Pebble Beach, Knight saw the van pulled over around the corner from her home.
Stolen van, stolen plate
“Something seemed fishy, so I decided to drive back around the block. When I came back around to Pebble Beach, the van was still there but the two guys weren’t in it. When I pulled up to my street, I found them at my front door.
"I pulled into my driveway rather quickly because I was shocked that they were actually there. They seemed startled to see me. They said they were looking for a friend. The one in the dark blue shirt pulled out his phone and started looking down. As they walked past my car and down my driveway, I took a photo of them.
“After they left, my neighbor across the street told me he had seen that I wasn’t home when he noticed the two guys at my front door. He was watching them for 30 seconds before he saw me pull up. He thought maybe I was coming home to meet them, but then when he saw them walk away, he knew something was wrong.
“I spoke with my husband and then decided to go where we were originally set to go. This is when I saw the van parked further down on Pebble Beach and took a photo of it.”
Knight’s husband called the Santee sheriff’s office to report the incident. Knight said, “They said they were going to send an officer to check out the area. They called back and said they didn’t find anything. I called the next morning and asked if they wanted the pictures and they told me to hold on to them in case something comes up. I was not given a case number or anything. I did mention that other people have seen the same van and about all the other break-ins in the area, but they didn't seem concerned.”
Several other residents have seen the same van cruising the area, including a neighbor who called the sheriff’s department on April 1 at about 4:30 p.m. regarding a suspicious vehicle in the area of 10331 Lairwood Drive in Santee.
Sgt. Daniel Morsch reported on April 1 that deputies observed the white Chrysler van as it parked. A suspect fled when approached by deputies. “It was only a matter of minutes from when he fled until officers made contact and detained him,” said Morsch.
The suspect found in a nearby backyard was identified as 23-year-old Jonathan Pasco. Another suspect was also briefly detained.
“The other subject appeared to be with Pasco," Morsch said. "However, no one could confirm he was involved in any criminal activity.”
Morsch said that the minivan had been reported stolen from Rancho San Diego and had stolen plates from another investigation in Santee. He also said that Pasco was related to the van in some way but couldn’t comment further.
Possible evidence from other crimes was found in the van, said Morsch. Pasco was charged with possession of a stolen vehicle and the van was towed.
“There may be other offenses pending,” said Morsch. “However, that will depend on the follow-up by the detectives on the case, which is still ongoing.”