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Looting Suspect Accused Of Dozens Of Thefts Arrested In South Lake Tahoe

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE (CBS13) — A suspected looter accused of committing dozens of thefts in South Lake Tahoe was arrested this week, the El Dorado County Sheriff's Office announced on Saturday.

Joseph Donald Dykes, 37, was booked into jail on charges of probation violation, grand theft, possession of stolen property and theft during a state of emergency.

(credit: El Dorado County Sheriff's Office)

According to the sheriff's office, Dykes seemingly began his crime spree once South Lake Tahoe—which was evacuated due to the Caldor Fire—was repopulated.

Dykes was reportedly sought over the last several days and was arrested after deputies caught him in the middle of an early morning crime spree. He was caught while fleeing a neighborhood near Saxton Creek in the Pioneer Trail corridor, the sheriff's office said.

He is accused of committing dozens of thefts from vehicles, garages and structures that were within zones that were previously evacuated. Dykes allegedly stole two cars in South Lake Tahoe.

Investigators recovered tens of thousands of dollars worth of stolen property, including a stolen SUV and stolen motorcycle, the sheriff's office said. Some of the property has been returned to its owners, while there remains a lot of unclaimed property with unidentified owners.

Anyone who may have been a victim of theft is urged to contact the El Dorado County Sheriff's Office.

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