By City News Service
Three Riverside County men accused in the theft of 29 iPads and other electronic devices from Del Mar Heights Elementary School are scheduled to appear at the downtown courthouse today, April 18, for a preliminary hearing.
Trevor J. Williams, 21, Thomas Earl Burleson, 21, and Eyon Zimmerman, 19, are charged with burglary and receiving stolen property.
Williams and Burleson are charged in connection with the burglary at the school in Del Mar. Zimmerman also faces charges related to six other burglaries at schools in San Diego County, said Deputy District Attorney Brendan McHugh.
Burleson faces seven years in prison if convicted, Williams nine years and Zimmerman 13 years.
Williams and Burleson are documented gang members and Zimmerman is a known associate, the prosecutor said.
The charges against the defendants include allegations that the crimes — which began Nov. 18 — were committed for the benefit of a gang, according to McHugh.
He said the defendants are also under investigation for break-ins in other Southern California counties, including Orange and Los Angeles counties.
The defendants were arrested Jan. 30 at a Temecula-area Border Patrol checkpoint. The iPads stolen from the Del Mar school earlier that morning or the night before were recovered from the defendants’ car, along with a laptop computer, bolt cutters and a projector, McHugh said.
At the conclusion of today’s preliminary hearing, a judge will decide whether enough evidence was presented for the defendants to stand trial.