Much has been said here and elsewhere about the apparent ripple effect of legislation reducing some crimes from felonies to misdemeanors – and the impact that move would have on the local criminal element.
After a recent arrest mentioned first on our Facebook Page and fleshed out by Lafayette police Friday, we were able to get a firsthand look at how some of those folks viewed Prop 47, how prolific they are at their work, and who exactly is picking up the tab.
As we first reported March 13, Lafayette police officers were dispatched to the 3200 block of Mt. Diablo Blvd. in response to the reported theft of a bicycle. Officers determined that an employee’s bicycle had been taken and a review of security footage turned up evidence of a man leaving a bike rack with the victim’s bike, along with an image of the car the thief had used in the crime.
Employees told police the man on the videotape was the same man who burglarized a customer’s vehicle several months earlier – making off with a set of golf clubs at that time. They were able to obtain a partial license plate number of the car used in that crime and were able to verify the make and model of the vehicle – information they provided to investigators.
Co-workers of the employee who had lost their bicycle immediately went to work monitoring internet classified ad sites in an attempt to locate it and, on Tuesday, March 14, were able to find the bike for sale on an internet site. Police were notified, the “seller” was contacted by detectives and informed the caller was interested in buying the bike if it was still for sale. The seller agreed to meet the “buyer” at a nearby BART Station the following day.
On Thursday, March 15, LPD investigators obtained an arrest warrant for the suspect, met with members of the Sheriff’s Investigation and Patrol Divisions (as the transaction was to take place in their jurisdictional area) and travelled to the station to await the suspect’s arrival. Police said the suspect, later identified as Diamein Hayter, 40, of Antioch, arrived at the station, accompanied by a juvenile.
Police said that as investigators watched the suspect removed the bicycle from the vehicle and directed the juvenile to ride the bike to the lower parking lot of the station to meet the buyer. The suspect then walked into the BART Station and entered the station – while watching the juvenile ride the bike to the parking lot. When the juvenile and bicycle were detained by investigators, the suspect moved to the train platform to board a waiting train – only to be detained by plainclothes Sheriff’s Investigators.
Hayter and the juvenile were both transported to LPD, according to police, where they were interviewed. The vehicle the pair arrived in was towed to LPD Storage. The juvenile was released to his parents and the suspect who had originally stolen the bicycle was transported and booked at the Martinez Detention Facility, where he remains in custody. Investigators are meeting with representatives from the District Attorney’s Office to file charges on the suspect today, Friday. The bicycle was returned to its owner.
Detectives said they were able to break this case and possibly the prior theft “because of the efforts of the co-workers,” and that they now have two solid cases to file.
Mr. Hayter’s position on the subject of his arrest and perhaps crime in general was perhaps best expressed by a post he left on his Facebook page during a previous arrest in 2014.