Thief faces more than five years in jail

March 30, 2009

By Staff

Cookie, a 1-year-old Maltese, poses for the camera before heading home with her owner, Mark. File

Cookie, a 1-year-old Maltese, poses for the camera before heading home with her owner, Mark. File

Faraz Zolfagharkani, a 21-year-old Bellevue man, pleaded guilty to several charges in King County and Issaquah courts.

Those charges included second-degree vehicle prowling, second-degree malicious mischief, first-degree trafficking of stolen property, second-degree theft, reckless driving and driving with a suspended license.

Zolfagharkani admitted to breaking into several vehicles in the Issaquah, Renton, Newcastle, Bellevue and Kirkland areas, stealing thousands of dollars in goods and causing several thousand dollars in damage to vehicles.The King County charges were combined from various jurisdictions and moved to a felony classification. Zolfagharkani will serve up to five years in prison for the charges, according to King County Prosecutor’s Office plea documents. His sentencing is April 17.

In Issaquah, Zolfagharkani was sentenced March 20 to a year in jail after pleading guilty to second-degree vehicle prowling, reckless driving and driving with a suspended license. In addition, he will pay $488 for court and restitution fees.

Issaquah police arrested Zolfagharkani on Oct. 16. Employees at the Sammamish Club, 2115 N.W. Poplar Way, noticed him looking in the windows of several vehicles in their parking lot. One employee ran out to confront Zolfagharkani, but he ran to his car and drove off, grazing the employee with his car in the parking lot, police reports said.

Police caught up with Zolfagharkani and his female companion a few blocks away. In the car, police found a purse with four screwdrivers and a tire iron. They also discovered a pipe and marijuana remnants in a soda bottle.

During his interview with police, Zolfagharkani said he knew of another case they might be interested in, which had taken place at the Sammamish Club on Sept. 11, the reports said.

In that case, two vehicles had been broken into at the athletic club. One of the cars contained Cookie, a 1-year-old Maltese, who belonged to a Bellevue man. The dog was taken from the car during that vehicle prowl.

Zolfagharkani was able to tell police where Cookie was located. Police recovered the dog at another Bellevue family’s home and returned it to its rightful owner in October.

The family who had purchased Cookie was unaware the dog had been stolen.

Zolfagharkani never admitted taking the dog.

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