Man arrested in July linked to four home burglaries in Palo Alto

George Martinez, 45, of East Palo Alto arrested July 29 after reportedly seen prowling in backyard

Palo Alto police say they have solved at least four more home burglaries since arresting a suspect in July.

On July 29, police responded to a report of a prowler in the area of Jefferson and Edgewood drives. A resident saw a man, later identified as George Martinez, 45, of East Palo Alto, in the backyard of her home and called police.

Officers spotted Martinez near the Edgewood Shopping Center on Channing Avenue. He ran from police but was caught at the intersection of Embarcadero and West Bayshore roads after a short foot chase, police said.

The resident identified Martinez as the person she had seen in her backyard, and he was arrested on a parole violation and booked into the Santa Clara County Main Jail. Police said he was on parole for assaulting a police officer.

Investigators found stolen property in Martinez's car, police said. Police say they have been able to link Martinez to four residential burglaries from July in which computers, cash and jewelry were stolen.

Police said the district attorney's office has charged Martinez with several counts of burglary. Community members are encouraged to report suspicious activity by calling 911 or 650-329-2413. Anonymous tips can be emailed to or people can anonymously call or text 650-383-8984.

— Bay City News Service

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Like this comment
Posted by Finn
a resident of Crescent Park
on Sep 7, 2011 at 9:14 am

So predictable at so many different levels.

Like this comment
Posted by Enough!
a resident of Charleston Meadows
on Sep 7, 2011 at 11:02 am

@Finn, sad, but true.

Will never understand the entitlement issues of criminals. I have seen help wanted signs lately at several places, McDonalds, coffee shops etc.

Not much, but erhaps it's better than hanging out in jail for 2 to 3 years.

Like this comment
Posted by not so simple?
a resident of Midtown
on Sep 7, 2011 at 11:20 am

Does McDonalds hire parolees?

Like this comment
Posted by Gethin
a resident of Midtown
on Sep 7, 2011 at 12:18 pm

The comments section is often quick to fault the PAPD but here is an opportunity to congratulate them on a job well done

Like this comment
Posted by Nayeli
a resident of Midtown
on Sep 7, 2011 at 5:40 pm

Why is it that these people don't realize that it is easier, less stressful and HONEST to simply GET A JOB?

There are many businesses in the region that would have hired a man like George Martinez.

Unfortunately, these sort of people think that they are entitled to whatever they can take.

When I was in college, I was assigned to attend an "anger management" meeting for a Sociology class. In that meeting, there were some low income individuals who had been required to attend the class.

In the group, several individuals said that there was nothing wrong with taking from people who were "rich" (which they defined as anyone who was middle class or higher). They believed that those who "have" were only able to succeed because they did so on the backs of those who "have not."

One man was in the class because he stole a bicycle from someone's yard. He still defended his action by saying, "They didn't need it. Besides, if they want another one, they can buy it. And, if they did need it, they should have locked it up better."

I was astonished.

These people truly believed that "class warfare" rhetoric and saw themselves as egocentric Robin Hoods. They felt that there was nothing wrong with taking from others because of their position in life. They weren't even embarrassed to say so!

The teacher of that class made a good point: He said, "There is NO EXCUSE for burglary. There is NO EXCUSE to steal a bicycle. There is NO EXCUSE for violence. Poverty is not an excuse. Bad parenting is not an excuse. Low education is not an excuse. Racism is not an excuse. The fact that you think that you got the bad end of the stick is not an excuse. THERE IS NO EXCUSE FOR CRIME!"

Sadly, some of those sitting in that meeting simply rolled their eyes. I was surprised at the level of "entitlement" thinking that goes through the minds of criminals. Of course, it gave me plenty of things to write about in my paper.


Like this comment
Posted by Terry
a resident of Midtown
on Sep 7, 2011 at 7:35 pm

Thanks for your comment, very informative.

Like this comment
Posted by Terry
a resident of Midtown
on Sep 7, 2011 at 7:37 pm

Thanks for your comment, very informative.

Like this comment
Posted by sad but true
a resident of Midtown
on Sep 7, 2011 at 11:12 pm

I agree with the above. However, I'm sad that he felt he had no other options than to take from people (ie us) he probably sees as rich and entitled themselves. What can we do to change this thinking, and to break down that us vs. them barrier?

Like this comment
Posted by Finn
a resident of Crescent Park
on Sep 7, 2011 at 11:17 pm

What would change his mind? How about swift justice and a long jail sentence should he be found guilty.

Like this comment
Posted by NICE
a resident of Meadow Park
on Sep 8, 2011 at 5:45 am

Nayeli, will you marry me

Like this comment
Posted by Observer
a resident of South of Midtown
on Sep 8, 2011 at 9:36 am

Perhaps while he is in prison, he should be shown videos of people with jobs going to work day after day and coming home exhausted to take care of their families.

Like this comment
Posted by Gio
a resident of Downtown North
on Sep 8, 2011 at 9:48 am

46 years old, linked to four other burglaries in the area, parole violation for assault on a police officer, obviously a carreer criminal, keep him behind bars where he belongs before he hurts or kills someone if he has not already, I think trying to understand and rehabilitate him is pointless at this point.

Like this comment
Posted by employee
a resident of Monroe Park
on Sep 8, 2011 at 2:57 pm

working is boring, work is an illness, cave men didnt work all day and you are their ancestors. work is a protestant puritan suffering ethic. imposed on native americans of whom the alleged burglar has ancestry. pilgrims are the criminals.

Like this comment
Posted by ColdReality
a resident of Atherton
on Sep 8, 2011 at 8:41 pm

Unfortunately when you have big HAVE community right next door to a big HAVE NOT community then these crimes will happen. Think, when was the last time you heard about a resident of PA getting caught on a B&E in EPA? No justification for crime but no McDonalds coffee house cut the lawn job is EVER going to get one a house full of HD TVs and BMWs on a tree lined street in PA. Some people can accept that and be content living an honest, simple life. Others cannot.

Like this comment
Posted by Nayeli
a resident of Midtown
on Sep 8, 2011 at 10:37 pm

@ ColdReality:

When wass the last time you visited government housing projects or Section 8 housing? Some of those residents have nicer cars, TVs, cell phones and clothing than our family!

Yes, there is a "must have" problem with many of the "have nots."

But the problem isn't that they are "have nots," but that so many are "will nots." In other words, many find that they could get an honest job...but they "will not" because it is easier to receive aid from the government and resort to criminal activity in order to supplement their income.

I just wonder what could be done to change this.

I grew up in an extremely poor home (we were migrant farm workers living in a one-bedroom travel trailer). Yet, my nine siblings had a good set of parents who taught us the difference between right and wrong. My parents NEVER stole from anyone and taught us that if we wanted more in life that we should work for it. So, they pushed us to excel in school and toward earning degrees in higher education. As a result, all of my siblings have graduated with at least a Bachelor's degree, with the exception of the youngest (currently at Stanford).

There is something wrong when society has taught the poor that "class warfare" exists in a nation where even those living in "poverty" live better than 80% of the world's population. Yet politicians continue to try and paint a picture where those who are successful are the bad guys who are full of greed.

Even the president did this several times in his address to Congress tonight. He conveyed an "us" against "them" picture when he said that the successful in this nation aren't paying their "fair share" -- when 42% of the nation doesn't even pay into the system at all! Yet he stated that the wealthy should pay even more of their income to be "fair" to those who aren't.

This is so untrue!

Most Americans don't get to where they are because they were greedy -- but because they were motivated hard workers.

I just think that there must be some way to motivate individuals OUT of a life of crime...or even motivate them to do something greater in their lives. Otherwise, you will have two types of poor: 1.) Those who will do the jobs that no one else will; 2). Those who want to do more with their lives; and, 3). Those who are content relying on the benevolence of taxpayers or stealing from those who "have."

I know that this sounds harsh...but it is my own opinion from my own life's experience. My father works part time at a Walmart in Texas -- and he now owns two homes on six acres without any debt. Sure, we had to sacrifice a lot to do this. We built most of those homes with our bare hands. Yet, we also maintained good grades in high school and college.

It can be done honestly.

Like this comment
Posted by Oscar
a resident of Mountain View
on Sep 8, 2011 at 10:42 pm

Perhaps, if he had found work at the dayworker center, he might not have turned to a life of crime.

Oh wait! Maybe he did.

We'll never know...because the dayworker center only keeps records on the criminals who hire criminals..not the criminals who are hired.


Like this comment
Posted by JustMe
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Sep 9, 2011 at 9:23 am

"working is boring, work is an illness, cave men didnt work all day and you are their ancestors. work is a protestant puritan suffering ethic. imposed on native americans of whom the alleged burglar has ancestry. pilgrims are the criminals."

Let's see, bad attitude, poor information, badly typed half-formed thoughts, turned into a rant. Okay,.....

But I thought I would like to point out that cave men DID work all day trying to scrounge enough food to survive another day, and they could not just got to Palo Alto to steal it. If they failed to find enough food to survive there were no charities to help them out, they simply died. Then, one day, Ogg got a bright idea, "Hey, instead of foraging an uncertain and variable food supply, why don't I save up extra food while there is plenty to carry me over the leaner times?" This is called work, with a promise of reduced risk of starvation.

It all went well until Gronk from 3 caves down, who was too lazy/stupid to collect his own food visited Ogg's cave while Ogg was out collecting acorns. He figured the "have-nots" have every right to take from the "haves", so he helped himself. So Ogg starved that winter. Gronk, who no longer had Ogg to steal from, starved to death soon after, because he had no food stores. He died cursing Ogg for being rich while he remained poor.

Like this comment
Posted by Pearl
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Sep 9, 2011 at 11:24 am

Jobs vs Crime

14 million unemployed.

"A top economist says President Barack Obama’s job plan will likely add 1.9 million jobs and grow the economy by 2 percent.

Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics, also said Obama’s $447-billion plan would likely cut the unemployment rate by a percentage point, United Press International reported on Friday."

Like this comment
Posted by Two cents
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Sep 10, 2011 at 12:29 am

Thanks you PA cops. Nice job.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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