Local man arrested again after Burney school burglary

BURNEY — A Burney man, already known for committing crimes throughout the Intermountain area, was arrested again after allegedly breaking into, vandalizing, and burglarizing Burney High School’s maintenance shop early Monday morning, April 15.

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Deputies assigned to Burney Mountain Sheriff’s Sub-Station were first alerted to the burglary around 6 a.m., SCSO Sgt. Marc St.Clair later reported.

Early in their investigation, deputies located video surveillance that showed a man, later identified as Jonathan Bradley Searl, “within the maintenance yard going through vehicles,” St. Clair explained. “The suspect then shut off the power to the building and forced entry into the shop.”

Sharp-eyed deputies subsequently located several items of potential evidence, including a used lottery ticket and clothing believed discarded by Searl during the school burglary.

With the recovered evidence in hand, deputies were able to track the lottery ticket’s serial number, which helped them locate and confirm the gas station where the ticket had been purchased.

Deputies soon learned that Searl had bought the recovered ticket two days before the burglary. Deputies also learned the clothing they recovered on the school’s property “matched the clothing Searl wore during the purchase of the lottery ticket,” said St. Clair.

Based on their investigation and discoveries, “deputies began to search all known areas and people Searl associates with,” St. Clair explained.

As their search continued, deputies received information that Searl was spotted near the Burney McDonald’s. Officials who responded to the restaurant eventually located Searl hiding in the McDonald’s restroom and took him into custody without incident.

Although Searl initially denied any knowledge of or involvement with the school burglary, “after being confronted with evidence against him, Searl admitted to the burglary and directed deputies to the stolen property,” explained St. Clair.

Deputies found much of the stolen property hidden in suitcases around the Quebec Street Apartments, according to the Sgt.

Searl was subsequently booked into Shasta County Jail on suspicion of three felonies, including second-degree burglary, vandalism, and grand theft.

Anyone with information regarding this burglary is encouraged to contact Sgt. M. St.Clair at (530) 245-6540 or through SHASCOM dispatch. Callers can refer to incident file number 19S013862 and can remain anonymous.


Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

Trevor Montgomery, 47, moved last year to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. Additionally, he writes for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers, Valley News, The Valley Chronicle, and Anza Valley Outlook; as well as Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County and Mountain Echo in Shasta County.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 28 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 15 – but soon to be 16 – grandchildren.

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