By Tom Mustin
LAKEWOOD, Colo. (CBS4) – A 24-year-old Longmont man faces a long prison sentence after ripping off dozens of businesses in Lakewood.
Arthur Lopez is awaiting sentencing after committing the crimes earlier this year.
Lopez had worn a GPS ankle monitor that detectives used to follow his crimes.
He confessed to the burglaries after realizing officers had followed his every move.
Brandon Stewart has little sympathy for the confessed burglar.
“We are very glad they caught him,” Stewart told CBS4’s Tom Mustin.
Stewart manages Johnny’s N.Y. Pizza, one of 24 places targeted by Lopez in the two-month crime spree that started in January.
“We came in and the front door was broken off,” said Stewart.
Lopez wore wearing ski goggles during the crimes. He told police he wore them to disguise his face.
He was caught after a detective saw something in the video.
“He noticed in some of the surveillance video that the burglar had glasses. He could see eye glasses beneath the goggles,” said Steve Davis, spokesman for the Lakewood Police Department.
The glasses lead to Lopez eventually being identified. Even more damaging, he had been wearing a tracking device.
“We found out later he got caught via his GPS ankle monitor from previous trouble he had been in, which is just true knuckleheadedom,” said Stewart.
Detectives traced his steps to various restaurants, liquor stores and laundromats.
Lopez admitted to several crimes, but told detectives he couldn’t remember specific places he had broken into and with whom.
He added that if his GPS monitor put him near a crime scene, he would claim responsibility.
“Truly unbelievable that somebody could not think it through to that degree,” said Stewart.
Lopez faces up to six years for each burglary charge. Stewart says all he asks is that the punishment fit the crime, “Twenty years, ten years, whatever. A good long time for him to sit in there and think about it.”
The owner of the Johnny’s NY Pizza, John Keiley, told Mustin “he’s a forgiving guy.”
He says when Lopez gets out of jail he’ll teach him how to make pizza and offer him a job.
Arthur Lopez is scheduled to be sentenced Dec. 4.
He refused to identify any other suspects. No other arrests have been made.