Upland burglary victim confronts suspect after finding items for sale online

UPLAND, Calif. (KABC) -- A man whose Upland home was burglarized found his items for sale online the same day and posed as a buyer to confront the suspect in person, police said.

The confrontation resulted in the suspect shooting at the victim and then getting bitten by a dog as he tried to flee. He was eventually taken into custody and the burglary victim was not injured.

"This could have gone terribly wrong," said Upland police Lt. Marcelo Blanco. "Someone could have gotten seriously hurt."

It all started when a home on the 1100 block of North Palm Avenue in Upland was burglarized.

The occupant called police to report the burglary. But police say they got a second call from the alleged burglary victim, reporting that the thief had put his stuff up for sale on the website Offer Up.

"We took the call and told him hang on a bit; we're getting officers (ready), and do this the safest way possible," said Blanco. "I guess he was a little impatient, and didn't want to wait for us, so he went to the location to meet with the suspect and try to get his property."

The location was only a couple miles away, on the 100 block of 13th Avenue. Police say the victim identified his property and was even helped by the suspect to put his property into the back of a pickup truck.

Police say the victim had yet to confront the suspect about the stolen items, when he noticed the suspect had a gun.

"A struggle ensues, in the process a shot is fired," said Blanco. "Fortunately, it didn't hit anybody. The suspect loses the gun; the victim (grabs the gun); and the suspect flees the area."

The victim then called police a third time, and reported what had just happened. Police say it didn't take long to track the suspect to a vacant home in Ontario. But they say the suspect wasn't about to give up just yet.

"As he's running out, he jumps the backyard into a neighbor's yard in the area, he is then bitten by the neighbor's dog," said Blanco. "(He) didn't think that went too well; so he jumps back into the vacant house's yard, (where) there are officers there to meet him."

The suspect was identified as 22-year old Josue Cervantes of Ontario. He was arrested on suspicion of burglary, negligent discharge of a firearm, and a probation violation.
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