TACOMA, WA – Pierce County Prosecutor Mark Lindquist charged Stephen Passmore, 49, with burglary and trafficking in stolen property for stealing and selling $1500 worth of scrap metal. The defendant was arrested and arraigned this week after being featured on Q13's Washington's Most Wanted.
"This case serves as another example of the power of collaboration between Washington's Most Wanted, Crime Stoppers, law enforcement, and our office," said Prosecutor Mark Lindquist. "Working together, we effectively serve our community."
On April 27, 2011, shortly after midnight, the defendant and his accomplice, Cyrus Tangorra, burglarized Tacoma Metals. They cut locks, climbed a fence, then threw 600 pounds of brass valves and radiators over the fence and into a U-Haul truck. Later that morning, the defendant, Tangorra, and a friend took the brass to Calbag Metals and sold it for $1500.
When the Tacoma Metals manager was made aware of the burglary, he contacted Calbag Metals which confirmed that it had received similar items. The Calbag employee said that the items were dropped off by three of their frequent customers, including the defendant. The incident was reported to the Tacoma Police Department.
During the investigation, detectives interviewed the defendant while he was in custody on unrelated charges. He explained that he had scrapped metal since he was a child, but he had no specific recollection of the incident at Tacoma Metals. The defendant was implicated in the burglary by multiple witnesses, including his accomplice, Tangorra.
On August 20, 2012 the defendant was summoned to appear before the Pierce County Superior Court regarding the charges of burglary and trafficking in stolen property. He did not appear and a warrant was issued for his arrest.
The defendant was featured on a Washington's Most Wanted broadcast on February 15, 2013. Crime Stoppers of Tacoma/Pierce County received various tips from viewers. The Pierce County Sheriff's Department's Community Support team followed up on these tips, which led to the defendant's arrest near his Spanaway residence on February 22.
The defendant's accomplice, Cyrus Tangorra, pled guilty to theft on January 28, 2013. He was sentenced to six months in jail.
The defendant has prior convictions for stolen property and drugs. His next court date is scheduled for March 14, 2013. Charges are only allegations and a person is presumed innocent unless he or she is proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
For more information, please contact Kelly Kelstrup at (253) 798-7792, [email protected].