Orange PD: Waterbury man had stolen license plates, car keys
ORANGE — Officers have arrested a Waterbury man they believe was connected to recent car burglaries and thefts in town and in nearby communities, police said Wednesday.
Juan Lozada, 24, of Waterbury, was charged with sixth-degree larceny, operating a motor vehicle without insurance, operating an unregistered motor vehicle, illegal possession of a license plate, operating a drug factory and possession of marijuana with intent to sell.
Around 2 a.m. Wednesday, officers on routine patrol on Dogwood Road saw a car parked on the side of the road and running. Officers conducted a motor vehicle stop and found the car occupied by five people, including Lozada, the driver.
Officers searched the car and found marijuana, packaging and weighing equipment, a loaded handgun, a number of car keys and fobs, a set of license plates and $528 in cash.
It was unclear who the handgun belonged to and whether that person had a permit for it.
The license plates were found to have come from a car recently stolen from Watertown, police said. And one of the key fobs belonged to a car that was entered the night before on Riverside Drive.
The passenger in the car, an unidentified juvenile male, was charged with possession of less than half an ounce of marijuana and interfering with police. Officers said he initially gave a false name when questioned by police.
None of the other passengers in the car were arrested, police said.
Lozada was held on a $10,000 bond.
The juvenile male was released on a promise to appear in juvenile court on June 4.
Police warned residents that in almost all recent cases of car break-ins or thefts, the suspects tend to overlook the cars that are locked and target those that aren’t.
“Don’t become a victim,” police urged. “Lock your vehicle and keep valuables out of sight.”
None of the other passengers in the vehicle were arrested.