Suspect arrested with Audi stolen in Sonoma
A 15-year-old Sonoma Valley boy, and an unidentified accomplice, stole a Toyota minivan in Santa Rosa on Thursday, Sept. 20, drove it to Sonoma and parked near a home in the 400 block of Greve Lane, then broke into the residence and began to ransack the home.
The thieves were in the process of loading contents from the home into a 2002 Audi Quatro parked in the garage, when the owner arrived, opened the garage door with his remote control and surprised them in the act of burglary.
The two juveniles bolted from the garage and ran for the nearby minivan, but the homeowner followed in his car and the would-be thieves disappeared into the neighborhood bordering Schocken Hill.
The homeowner immediately called police, who found a school backpack, belonging to one of the boys, abandoned in the stolen minivan. The backpack provided identification for the 15-year-old, who had been expelled that morning from a Santa Rosa continuation school.
Sonoma police and Sheriff’s deputies established a perimeter around the area encompassing Lovall Valley Road, Fourth Street East, Gehricke Road and Brazil Street.
The Sheriff’s helicopter, Henry 1, was pressed into service to establish aerial surveillance, and officers searched the area until midnight. But the elusive twosome vanished and there was no sign of them until a resident near the burgled home heard a car start at about 1:30 a.m. Friday and noticed that the garage door of the victim’s home was open.
The young thieves, it turned out, had escaped with the key to the Audi still parked in the garage. Entering through a side garage door they had earlier pried open with a piece of steel rebar, they made off with the car.
The car and the car thieves disappeared into the night, but at about 2:30 p.m. Friday, a Sonoma County Sheriff’s deputy spotted the Audi on Bennett Valley Road headed toward Santa Rosa. The deputy called for backup and the car was stopped on 4th Street near downtown Santa Rosa.
Behind the wheel was 18-year-old Nathan Paul Wilson, of Rohnert Park, who had in his possession a wallet containing credit cards belonging to a Rohnert Park resident. Sheriff’s detectives determined the wallet was recently stolen from a locked vehicle in Rohnert Park and that Wilson had used the owner’s credit cards at various retail shops in the Santa Rosa area. Wilson was booked into the county jail for vehicle theft, possession of a stolen vehicle, 2 counts of residential burglary, possession of stolen property, theft by use of credit card, and driving on a suspended driver's license. His bail was set at $80,000, but authorities did not confirm by mid-day Saturday whether Wilson was the accomplice of the 15-year-old identified in the Greve Lane attempted burglary.
Detectives from the Sonoma County Property Crimes Investigation Unit were still following leads on the second suspect, presumed to be the 15-year-old Sonoma youth, whose father told Sonoma police he had not returned home Thursday night.
Anyone with information about the case is asked to call Detective Sal Borruso at 565-2185.