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Offbeat

Bizarre security video shows prowler Roberto Arroyo who licked intercom button for hours at stranger’s home in California

  • Surveillance footage recorded a crystal-clear image of man, allowing authorities to quickly identify him
PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 09 January, 2019, 1:08pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 09 January, 2019, 2:08pm

Police in California have tracked down a man they said spent hours licking the button on an intercom speaker at someone else’s home.

The man, who was identified as Roberto Daniel Arroyo, 33, was caught on video early Saturday at a residence in the 400 block of Hyde Street, said Miguel Cabrera, a spokesman for the Salinas Police Department.

Surveillance footage recorded a crystal-clear image of Arroyo, allowing authorities to quickly identify him.

A patrol officer spotted Arroyo, who police say is homeless, the following day. He was questioned and then released, though he still faces a possible charge of petty theft.

Police said Arroyo’s long night of odd behaviour began about 2am, when he approached the house and stared straight into the camera of the home’s doorbell surveillance system.

Arroyo hung out in the doorway for more than two hours, moving in and out of the camera’s frame, Cabrera said.

At one point in the video, the man lay down in front of the door for 20 minutes before springing back up.

“He was there for a while,” Cabrera said.

“He curls in front of the front area of the residence … like he’s taking a nap.”

Afterward, he stood with his back to the camera, appearing to urinate into a planter by the home’s front door, authorities said.

Arroyo also disconnected an extension cord that powered the home’s Christmas lights and walked off with it, Cabrera said.

Hence the potential petty theft charge, Cabrera said.

“It’s probably the weirdest (case) I’ve heard in many years,” he said.

Arroyo has had previous run-ins with the Salinas Police Department, including arrests for suspicion of public intoxication, Cabrera said. Police said he was already on probation, though it was unclear what charges led to his probation.

The Monterey County District Attorney’s Office will decide whether to charge Arroyo, officials said.