Police Make Arrests in Jewelry Burglary

Zachary Morales and Tiffanie Moreland, suspects arrested over a local break-in.
Zachary Morales and Tiffanie Moreland, suspects arrested over a local break-in.

A state prison parolee and his girlfriend were arrested by Laguna Beach police last week, suspected in a recent break-in on Driftwood Drive and as many as three other burglaries in Orange, Villa Park and Laguna Niguel, police said.

The homeowner’s detailed description of the thieves and their sedan helped investigators identify the suspects, Sgt. James Cota said. The homeowner got a close look at the thieves as he encountered them fleeing the home when he arrived and when their vehicle collided with his, Cota said. The man was masked and the female had pink hair, he said.

Six days after the break-in, Laguna officers, state parole agents and Anaheim police arrested Zachary Morales, 26, and Tiffanie Moreland, 23, at their apartment in Anaheim Wednesday, Sept. 6. A search of their premises did not recover the loot from the Laguna Beach burglary, which included $17,000 in jewelry and five designer handbags.

Even so, police seized a personal checkbook, a laptop and other items that investigors believe tie the thieves to break-ins elsewhere, said Cota. Investigators are checking pawn shops, but thieves generally dispose of stolen goods within 48 hours, he said.

Morales, who was recently released from state prison for burglary, was charged with possession of stolen property, identity theft, possession of a controlled substance and check fraud. He was booked into Orange County Jail where he is being held without bail for a parole violation, says a police statement.

Moreland, the owner of the suspected get-away vehicle, was charged with residential burglary and possession of stolen property and is being held on $50,000 bail at Orange County Jail. She had changed her hair color at the time of her arrest, Cota said.


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