Two Witnesses Testify in String of Robberies


By Penelope Tsiopos

The third time is not the charm for the two young defendants who attempted to rob the same Target.

The prosecution, represented by Deputy DA Alvina Tzang, called the loss prevention employee to the stand who worked at the times of the crimes at Target. According to his witness testimony, his job does not require him to notify law enforcement if the value of stolen merchandise is below a certain amount and if it is a singular offense.

The witness said the two defendants in the court successfully robbed the Davis Target on July 30, 2018, at 12:30pm. The prosecution showed five videos and in these videos the witness identified the two young men as Edward Phillip Farris and Dustin Jay Kruckenberg.

They went through the front entrance straight to the camping and sports section. There they gathered $579.95 worth of items which included two tents, an air mattress, and two Shark vacuums. Merchandise that costs above a certain amount has a security measure called “spider apps” attached to it, but it is unclear if the defendants removed them or if they were defective.

The second instance occurred on August 5, 2018, around 9:30 am and went similarly. The total price of the second theft added up to $599.95 because they took a toaster as well. Mr. Farris left the store and then Mr. Kruckenberg pushed the cart out just like the first time. The witness was informed of these two thefts when he went into work at 2:15pm on both days. He was not there to witness the crimes.

The witness was asked to describe what route they took when they left and which areas they chose to rob using the People’s Exhibits 12 and 14, diagrams of the layout of the store. The prosecution then asked about the third time.

The third time did not go as the alleged thieves planned. The witness had come into work and was notified that the same individuals who committed the crimes that morning and few days prior were in the process of committing another crime. This time the two defendants decided to attempt to take more expensive items that totaled around $1079.  The items were two Dyson vacuums and a tent.

The witness filed a report and called the Davis police. He exited his office, which was right next to the exit where Mr. Krcukenberg was standing with the cart. The witness made it clear that Mr. Kruckenberg would have had to bypass all the cashier stands to get to that spot.

When Mr. Kruckenberg was approached by the witness, he simply said he was not done shopping and then proceeded to go to the women’s section and abandoned the cart. Mr. Farris watched the interaction from behind the self-checkout. Mr. Farris then exited and went to the car, while his accomplice left on foot.

The witness’s partner was outside on his break and wrote down the car information.

The defense counsel, Attorney Bob Spangler and Deputy Public Defender Dean Johansson, did not cross-examine the witness for as long as the direct examination. They asked clarifying questions about the procedure in reporting the crimes to the police.

The surveillance from the latter two instances are missing because when the DVD is burned the system deletes the video. The police require a hard copy and the witness guessed the evidence was at the police department.

The defense also asked about the spider app. The witness said there are three explanations: the defendants cut it off, it was lose, or it was defective. The Target employees found a few discarded spider apps, but could not be sure if they were from these occurrences.

The second witness, the first witness’ partner, did not testify for long because everything that needed to be addressed was done during the examination of the first witness. However, he did describe the items taken during the two thefts and the third attempt. He also filed the police reports. Following his short testimony, the trial broke for lunch and was set to resume in the afternoon.

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About The Author

The Vanguard Court Watch operates in Yolo, Sacramento and Sacramento Counties with a mission to monitor and report on court cases. Anyone interested in interning at the Courthouse or volunteering to monitor cases should contact the Vanguard at info(at)davisvanguard(dot)org - please email info(at)davisvanguard(dot)org if you find inaccuracies in this report.

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