Saturday Burglar Arrested near Gambell Safeway on 19 Charges

Utilizing surveillance imagery from a burglary carried out on Saturday on Resurrection Drive, patrol officers apprehended the suspect on Sunday, APD revealed on Tuesday.

The burglary case was opened early Saturday morning at 4:43 am when officers responded to the 8000-block of Resurrection Drive after a call reporting a burglary. Police would discover that the suspect, later identified as 24-year-old Lafaele Selesitino, had stolen items from the victim’s truck and used the garage door opener in the truck to open the garage door and gain access to the home. Inside, the suspect stole additional items including a credit card, which he would later use.

Surveillance images showing the suspect and his vehicle were obtained from a neighbor’s security camera. Those images were distributed to APD patrol officers.

On Sunday, an officer on patrol would spot the vehicle on 15th and Fairbanks near the black Angus Hotel. The officer followed the red Chevy Trailblazer and called for backup. The vehicle pulled into a  parking lot at 14th and Gambell, and as the officer awaited the arrival of his backup, two men exited the vehicle.

As backup was arriving, the two men went back to the vehicle and got in. As the vehicle was exiting the parking lot, the officers executed a traffic stop.

The officer made contact with the driver and recognized him as the suspect in the burglary the day before. Selesitino, yet to be identified, initially was uncooperative and would not provide ID, answer questions, identify his passenger, or exit the vehicle. It would take several minutes to get the suspect to exit the vehicle, and when he finally did, he was taken into custody.

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When the pat-down procedure was initiated, “Selesitino began to yell and struggle,” APD said. With the assistance of the other officer, Selesitino was searched and the officer would find on his person, items “that belonged to other people to include a garage door opener, ID, prescription medication, and credit cards,” it was reported.

A handgun was also found directly under the driver’s seat. A check would find that it had been reported stolen on December 9th, 2017. The firearm’s owner said that as he was preparing for a fishing trip, he placed the bag in the bed of his truck and began walking back to his house to get more items, when “an unknown male pulled up in a vehicle, grabbed the bag from the bed, and took off.”

Selesitino and his passenger were transported to the police department for questioning. After questioning, the passenger was released without charges. Selesitino was charged with a litany of offenses that included “Burglary I, Theft II – Firearm, five counts of Theft II – Access Device, Misconduct Involving a Weapon III, Misconduct Involving a Weapon V, two counts of Forgery II, Criminal Trespass II, Theft IV, and Misconduct Involving a Controlled Substance V.  He was additionally cited for Front Plate Required, Defective Windshield, Driving Without Proof of Insurance, Vehicle to be Licensed/Registered, and Failure to Obey Traffic Citations.

Selesitino was transported to the Anchorage Jail and remanded on those 19 charges.