A San Jose man has been charged with 20 commercial burglaries, in which he and accomplices allegedly used a saw to break into and cart away cash-filled ATMs from businesses.
Charles Edward Hastings has also been charged with committing multiple acts of felony vandalism in connection with the burglaries, according to Santa Clara County District Attorney Jeff Rosen. The suspect allegedly netted nearly $190,000 from the thefts.
The crimes occurred in six different cities across Santa Clara County, Rosen said in a statement.
Earlier this month, Hastings is believed to have forced entry into the American Legion Hall in Santa Clara, where he and his accomplices cut into an ATM with a cordless saw. They stole $10,800 from the ATM and a donation box containing eyeglasses for veterans, according to Rosen.
Hastings, 42, is in custody without bail. He is to be arraigned today in San Jose. If convicted, he faces incarceration.
“Property crimes can be as traumatic and destructive as violent crimes,” said Rosen. “All residents of Santa Clara County – including those who victimize us – should know this: You will never be below our radar.”
According to prosecutors, Hastings and his accomplices repeatedly broke into closed establishments between Oct. 31, 2021 and Feb. 3, 2022. Hastings has also been charged with burglarizing multiple stores and taking high-end items, such as jewelry, guitars, and bicycles.
Hastings was identified and arrested following an investigation led by San Jose Police Department Detective Thanh Tong. Tong worked closely with SJPD’s Financial Crimes and Burglary Prevention units. Also involved in the investigation was the Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety and police departments in Campbell, Los Gatos-Monte Sereno, Palo Alto and Santa Clara, Rosen said. Law enforcement linked Hastings to the crimes via a consistent pattern, of using his vehicle at every burglary, plus surveillance footage.
The estimated value of items and money taken by Hastings is $189,654. The estimated cost to repair the damage inflicted by Hastings is $65,200, according to Rosen.
Outstanding Police work, “San Jose Police Department Detective Thanh Tong!”
Thank-you for your service!
David S. Wall
Good job officer than tong. Once again