A married Westchester couple has been charged with allegedly stealing $25,000 to $30,000 worth of bicycles, scooters and high-end strollers in Manhattan Beach and Redondo Beach, police said.
Detectives from the Manhattan Beach and Redondo Beach police departments served a search warrant March 17th at a Westchester home, where they recovered 16 high-end strollers, 23 bicycles and some motorized scooters, Manhattan Beach police spokeswoman Stephanie Martin said. Police believe the majority of items was allegedly stolen from underground garages and in front of homes in Manhattan Beach.
The two police departments were jointly investigating thefts of bicycles and baby strollers from the beach cities and identified one of the suspects as 33-year-old Westchester resident Anthony Taraszka, Martin said.
Police conducted surveillance of the suspect’s home and after serving the warrant, they arrested Taraszka and his wife, 31-year-old Michelle Thompson, Martin said. Taraszka, who is currently on parole for burglary, was charged with two counts of possession of stolen property and one count of possession of a controlled substance, Martin said. Thompson was also charged with two counts of possession of stolen property.
Manhattan Beach police Sgt. Brian Brown said the community experienced a high number of bicycle thefts last summer and noted that thefts of baby strollers are uncommon in the area.
Police have identified four of the victims and returned their property to them.
Taraszka is being held without bail and Thompson is in custody on $120,000 bail, Martin said.