Looter caught robbing homes in Caldor Fire evacuation zone

EL DORADO, CA – Over the last several days the Caldor Fire Law Enforcement Security Team worked with EDSO Patrol to catch a looter who committed dozens of thefts from vehicles, garages, and structures in the evacuation zones, and stole at least two vehicles in the South Lake Tahoe area. EDSO deputies disrupted the suspect during an early morning crime spree, who was caught while fleeing a neighborhood in the Pioneer Trail corridor into the forest near Saxton Creek.

On 09-17-2021, 37-year-old Joseph Donald Dykes was arrested and booked for a probation violation. Dykes is facing additional charges of Theft, Grand Theft, Possession of Stolen Property and Theft during a State of Emergency. There are no reports that these crimes occurred during the evacuation period. It appears once evacuation zones were repopulated, Dykes began his spree.

After days of chasing investigative leads and conducting probation searches, the team has recovered tens of thousands of dollars in stolen property including a stolen SUV and a stolen motorcycle. EDSO has returned a significant amount of stolen property to the owners, and still have a lot of unclaimed property whose owners have not been identified.

If anyone in the county has been a victim of theft and/or is missing property from the last four days in the South Lake Tahoe area, we ask you contact Deputy Earl at 530-663-3364, or by email at earlc@edso.org EDSO has valuable property in our possession that can possibly be identified by additional victims.

EDSO is also getting reports of found property in the affected neighborhoods. If citizens discover items hidden in the area or on their property, please call the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office for investigation as there are numerous outstanding stolen items.

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