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Vigilant citizen helps police arrest Home Depot swamp cooler theft suspect in Apple Valley

APPLE VALLEY, Calif. ( — A vigilant citizen helped police arrest a suspect wanted for swamp cooler theft from the Home Depot in Apple Valley.

On Tuesday, May 16, 2023, at approximately 6:20 p.m., an unknown suspect loaded a swamp cooler onto a hand truck and left the store without paying.

Home Depot employees called to report the theft and Deputy Jarred Rodgers responded to the location at 12218 Apple Valley Road.  

Sheriff’s officials said that a resident who lives near the business called and reported suspicious activity when she witnessed a male and female loading a swamp cooler into a vehicle that was parked near her home.

Based on information obtained by this witness, Deputy Rodgers was able to identify a vehicle involved in this crime. The deputy obtained a search warrant for the residence where the vehicle was registered.

The following day, the warrant was executed by Apple Valley Police detectives, and the stolen swamp cooler was recovered at the residence. Detectives were able to identify the unknown suspect as Robert Vasquez, 29, a resident of Victorville.

Vasquez was arrested for grand theft and booked into the High Desert Detention Center.  

Anyone with information about this investigation is asked to contact the Deputy Rodgers at the Apple Valley Police Department at (760) 240-7400 or Sheriff’s Dispatch at (760) 956-5001. Callers wishing to remain anonymous are urged to call the We-Tip Hotline at 1-800-78CRIME (27463) or you may leave information on the We-Tip website at 

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