A suspected burglar was caught after he left his cellphone in the house he allegedly broke into, according to Murrieta police.
The alleged break-in was discovered when the victim returned home at about 1 p.m. Monday in the 33000 block of Honeysuckle Lane in the Mapleton housing tract, according to Murrieta police Sgt. Phil Gomez.
As the woman opened her garage door with an automatic opener, she told police she saw a man running from her garage, Gomez said, in a news release.
She told police her home had been ransacked and that a safe usually in her bedroom was now in the garage, Gomez said.
Items such as jewelry and currency from the U.S. and Africa were allegedly missing, he said.
"While looking around her bedroom, the victim noticed a cellphone on her bedroom dresser that did not belong to her or anyone in her family," Gomez said.
"Leads collected from the scene and from within the cellphone led detectives to identify a potential suspect, Kyle Thomas Lankford, 19 of Menifee."
Murrieta police investigators located and arrested Lankford at about 3:45 p.m. the next day.
He was booked into Southwest Detention Center on suspicion of residential burglary and probation violation.
Lankford was released on $25,000 bail the same day and was due in court Aug. 10, jail records indicated.
Police were continuing their investigation into the burglary and asked anyone with information to contact Detective John Nelson at 951-461-6383 or Sgt. Phil Gomez at 951-461-6356.
Information can also be provided anonymously through "We Tip" at 1-800-78-CRIME.