The man accused of terrorizing a Canyon Country couple at knife-point as they slept in their bed has been arrested more than a dozen times since May 2013, court papers show.
Michael Bryan Estrada, 26, of Boyle Heights, was arrested Saturday morning on suspicion of robbery after a Canyon Country couple was wakened from their sleep by an intruder inside their home, brandishing a knife in each hand.
Estrada appeared Wednesday in San Fernando Superior Court where he entered a plea of not guilty.
“He pleaded not guilty yesterday to two counts of residential robbery and one count of first degree residential burglary, person present,” Ricardo Santiago, spokesman for the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office told The Signal Thursday.
Detectives with the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station recognized the intruder from video images captured on a home video surveillance system.
Estrada has been familiar to local sheriff’s deputies since May 2013 when he was arrested on a felony vandalism charge for damage costing more than $400.
Since that time, the man sometimes identified by arresting deputies as a laborer or machine operator, has been arrested a dozen more times, with charges including: shoplifting, possession of burglary tools and, at least two counts of possessing a controlled substance.
In December 2014, Estrada was sentenced to a year in jail. No arrests appear on his record during 2015.
Since last year, from January 2016, however, Estrada was arrested nine times – once every month from January to April when he was sentenced to 90 days in jail. Then he was arrested in both June and July, and sentenced in July to another term of 90 days.
Estrada remains behind bars at the North County Correctional Facility at Pitchess Detention Center in Castaic, with bail set at $100,000, according to arrest papers maintained by the Los Angeles County Sheriff Department’s Inmate Information Center.
Estrada’s most recent arrest involves the home robbery of a Canyon Country couple inside their home.
About 1:15 a.m. Friday, deputies with the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station responded reports of a burglary on the 18200 block of Sierra Highway, Lt. Ignacio Somoano told The Signal Tuesday.
The victim, described only as a 33-year-old Hispanic woman, said she was awakened by noises in the home.
“When she started to get out of bed to inquire, a male suspect entered the room armed with two knives,” Somoano said, noting the suspect had his face and his hands covered with clothing.
The ordeal ended when the suspect fled the home with money and cell phones stolen from the couple.
Fortunately, the terrifying incident was captured and recorded by home surveillance equipment.
The video surveillance footage clearly depicted the suspect’s actions prior to entering the residence and concealing his face and body, Somoano said.
He confirmed Santa Clarita Valley Station Detectives immediately processed the surveillance video, checked for witnesses, and investigated the scene of the crime.
By late Friday afternoon and after extensive research and investigative work, a known narcotics offender was identified as the suspect who committed the crime.
This information was shared with patrol personnel.
A patrol deputy familiar with the suspect, located him in a wash area near Soledad Canyon Road and Sierra Highway at about 10:00 a.m., Saturday.
“Based on the great surveillance footage, the suspect admitted to the crime,” Somoano said Tuesday.
On Wednesday, however, Estrada entered a plea of not guilty.
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