Beginning 9/16/20, residents of Strawberry Village and Pitts Avenue in Pittsville began to experience a string of vehicle break-ins, some of which resulted in the thefts of credit cards, wallets, cash, Computer equipment, and jewelry valued at $21,000.00. The resulting investigation conducted by the Pittsville Police Department yielded images captured by surveillance cameras at retail establishments in and around the Berlin/West Ocean City area showing what appeared to be an Hispanic male wearing a green bandana as a face mask using a credit card stolen from one of the vehicles that had been broken into..
On 9/19/20, just after 4:00 p.m., Pittsville police located a male subject who strongly resembled the male subject captured in the surveillance footage walking east on Old Ocean City Rd. in the area of Strawberry Village. While the male subject, identified as Steven Arechiga, was being questioned, he stated that he had just moved to the area two weeks prior from New Mexico where he is a member of Las Cruces street gang and had recently relapsed into his addiction to heroin. Arechiga then admitted to breaking into vehicles and removing items matching the description given above. The investigation subsequently led to a residence on Diva Ct. in the Strawberry Village Community where items stolen during the vehicle burglaries were located. Pittsville Police also recovered methamphetamines, heroin, and other items Arechiga stated he had purchased using the cash and cards he had stolen from the vehicles.
Arechiga was arrested and charged with 21 counts ranging from Burglary – Rogue and Vagabond, Credit Card Offenses, and a variety of Theft charges and is being held at the Wicomico County Detention Center on $15,000 bond. Charges for Controlled Dangerous Substance violations are pending.
Additional items located during this investigation also led to charges pending in Worcester County and Delmar, De.