Thu, Jan. 23

Man suspected in burglaries has bail set at $35,000

Benjamin Romero

Benjamin Romero

CAMP VERDE -- A man jailed recently on charges stemming from being found with alleged stolen items had his bond set Monday.

Benjamin Romero, 41, of Clarkdale, has been in custody since July 26. Monday, in Yavapai Superior Court, Judge Michael R. Bluff removed the no-bond hold placed on Romero. He replaced that with a $35,000 cash-only bond.

Romero is due back in court Sept. 9 for a hearing.

Romero’s charges include various counts of third-degree burglary, possession of burglary tools, possession of weapons by a prohibited person, theft and criminal property damage greater than $250.

In June, Verde Valley Habitat for Humanity reported to police a burglary in which power tools, a generator and other hand tools were stolen.

In early August, Cottonwood police announced Romero, already booked on suspicion of multiple recent burglaries, would also be charged related to Habitat's missing tools.

The value of the tools was estimated at approximately $2,000.

Yavapai County Deputy County Attorney Patti Wortman pointed out that Romero has prior arrests and that he had already had a warrant issued for his arrest this year for failing to appear on charges of drug paraphernalia possession and driving with license suspended.

Wortman said the individual bonds totaled more than $100,000, and she said a good compromise would be $50,000.

On July 26, Romero had been was arrested and charged with numerous felonies related to recent burglaries in Clarkdale and Cottonwood, including one involving dozens of items taken from a music store.

Verde Valley Habitat for Humanity reported the theft after a generator taken from there was found in his possession. VVHH tracks their tools and equipment through serial numbers and special markings.

The generator taken from them in June was matched by the serial number of the one in Romero’s possession.

Romero’s criminal history dates back many years and includes an April 2018 charge of theft.

A 1999 conviction stemmed from charges that included aggravated assault on a peace officer.

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