Vet accused of terrorizing family held to answer to charges

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A local man facing several criminal charges including possession of an assault weapon after he allegedly forced his way into a Saugus home, armed with a handgun, and forced the family to cower inside a room, has been held to answer for the charges against him.

 Jeremiah Charles Ditch, 35, of Santa Clarita was arrested in December on suspicion of burglary in connection with the incident on the 28400 block of Santa Rosa Lane.

 Ditch appeared Tuesday in San Fernando Superior Court where he was ordered to stand trial for burglary, possession of an assault weapon and possession of stolen property.

 The accused man, who served in Iraq with the US Army, was ordered two weeks ago to undergo testing to determine his mental competency.

 On Jan. 12, the results of that testing revealed he was mentally competent to stand trial, Ricardo Santiago, spokesman for the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office revealed.

 “He was held to answer on all of the charges today,” Santiago told The Signal Tuesday.

 Ditch is scheduled to be arraigned on the charges against him on Feb. 3.

 According to the Saugus man who phoned deputies of the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station last month to report an intruder, a man armed with a handgun, banging on his front door, had forced his way into the residence after 20 minutes of trying to gain access.

 No shots were fired during the incident.

 While the man was banging on the door, the Saugus resident cowered in an upstairs bedroom of the home with his wife and 15-year-old daughter, fearing for his safety and the safety of his family.

 Deputies arrived at the home, he said, within a couple of minutes of the intruder having kicked down the door and entering the home.


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