21 Aug 2014
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Deputies Bust County-wide Theft Ring in Scotts Valley

An apartment was raided on Oak Lane Thursday morning after days on the trail of serial thieves.

Deputies Bust County-wide Theft Ring in Scotts Valley Deputies Bust County-wide Theft Ring in Scotts Valley Deputies Bust County-wide Theft Ring in Scotts Valley Deputies Bust County-wide Theft Ring in Scotts Valley

Two bags of stolen mail and other stolen items were found in a Scotts Valley apartment that was the scene of a search by the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office on Thursday.

Deputies went to the home around 11 a.m. to serve a search warrant for identity theft items, stolen property, and stolen mail after receiving information that stolen property was being shipped to the home at 138 Oak Ln.

Deputies were led to the home through the course of investigating two wanted fugitives, Erin Boetzer of Scotts Valley and Bernard Gomez of Watsonville.

The couple . A foot chase ensued but the two got away at that time. Deputies were able to identify two vehicles that were with the couple and found drugs, stolen property and loaded guns inside.

Over the weekend, Gomez was arrested by the Santa Cruz County Gang Task Force in Watsonville. He had stolen property and stolen mail in his possession. That arrest led to a hotel room in Santa Cruz.

“Deputies went there and found more stolen property and more stolen mail from about 64 victims from all over the county,” Deputy April Skalland said.

Another female connected to Gomez and Boetzer, Jovana Moller, was arrested at the hotel with stolen laptops and other stolen property in her car.

Items from the hotel room led deputies to the Scotts Valley apartment.

“We believe they were shipping the items from all the stolen identities to this address,” Skalland said. “We have been here for a little while and have already found two bags of stolen mail.

The owner of the apartment building said that there is only one person on the lease and it is not Gomez, Boetzer, or Moller.

In addition to Gomez, Moller and Boetzer, Skalland said she wouldn’t be surprised if others where involved in the theft ring.

A neighbor, Philip Horne, who lives in the upstairs apartment across a walkway but in the same complex, said he was startled to hear Sheriff’s Detectives banging on his neighbor’s door early Thursday.

“You don’t expect to have this next door,” he said. “I was definitely surprised.”

Although Boetzer and Moller are not on the lease, Horne said the two looked familiar after seeing their mug shots.

“I’m almost positive I’ve seen the blonde (Boetzer),” Horne said. “They used to sit out by the pool.”

Stay tuned to Patch as this story continues to develop.

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