Suspect in Toms River Burnt House Burglary Arrested
Toms River police barely had to leave the neighborhood where a 90-year-old woman's house caught fire late Sunday, to find the man they believe looted it only hours after the flames were out.
Wilfredo A. Antuna, 24, previously of Orlando, Florida, was apprehended today at a house on Acapulco Drive, not far from the Caribbean Drive dwelling that went up in flames.
Officers going door-to-door developed a lead from a concerned resident, police said, and later determined that Antuna was wanted on a $1,000 warrant issued in Kearney.
Among the items taken was a flat-screen television, which police said was spotted in a car outside the house where Antuna was found, still covered in soot and fire residue.
Still missing is a quantity of jewelry, police said.
The burglary took place some time before 8 AM on Monday, March 3, 10 hours after the elderly woman's home erupted in flames, police said. Inspectors from the Toms River Bureau of Fire Prevention had secured and locked it as they left, police said.
An individual acting on the woman's behalf the next morning discovered that the house had been entered by force and burglarized, police said.
Antuna was sent to the Ocean County Jail in Toms River, with bail set at $10,000.
The victim remains at Community Medical Center for treatment of smoke inhalation.