Tarzana: Detectives have
released photos of a man who has walked into several Ventura
Boulevard office buildings for the purpose of stealing items like
laptops and cell phones.
“We refer to thieves like this man as Office Creepers,” said Capt.
Paul Vernon, who heads up the West Valley Patrol Division. “They
are bold and brazen, and they’ll usually have an excuse when
In this case, the 50-something year old Black man will say, “Oops,
I’m lost,” or “Can you give me directions?” He has hit two
buildings in Tarzana and Encino over a four-week period, starting
in late June. He seems to hit around lunch time when employees are
away from desks.
The pictures are quite clear of this 6-foot man, who is medium
build with thinning hair. Anyone who knows the thief should be able
to recognize him.
Here are a few steps to protect your business against office
• Install a video security system
• Restrict entry to offices with keypads or other lock
• Close and lock offices when not in use
• Ensure reception areas are staffed and challenge unfamiliar
• Have employees lock up purses and valuables out of sight
• Be leery of persons whom you find walking in areas restricted to
• Secure back entries and storage closets
Anyone with information on this crime is urged to call Officer
Steffensen, West Valley Burglary detectives, at (818) 374-7769.
Anonymous tips can be called into Crimestoppers at 800-222-TIPS
(8477), or by texting 274637 (C-R-I-M-E-S on most keypads) with a
cell phone. All text messages should begin with the letters “LAPD.”
Online tips may be placed at www.LAPDOnline.org, click on “webtips”
and follow the prompts.