Burglar Who Robbed Home of Steve Jobs in Palo Alto, California Sentenced to Seven Years

Posted by , , at 8:17 am

Late last summer I reported on a burglar who robbed the home of Steve Jobs’ family – apparently the intruder had no idea whose home it was – and who was later apprehended by police after they were able to use tracking technology in Apple devices stolen from the home. A recent news article reports that the man has just been sentenced – and also indicates that this was not his first burglary.

The man who broke into the Palo Alto, Calif., home of late Apple CEO Steve Jobs and stole laptops, iPads and other possessions has been sentenced to seven years in a California state prison. Kariem McFarlin was arrested in August last year by officers from the Rapid Enforcement Allied Computer Team, a Silicon Valley-based high-tech crime unit formed by local, state and federal law enforcement agencies.

How They Tracked the Burglar Down

REACT officers found McFarlin with help from Apple security, which tracked where the stolen devices were being used by matching their serial numbers with connections to Apple iTunes servers. The IP address in use matched a line in McFarlin’s apartment in nearby Alameda that was also being used by an Apple device registered to a member of his family, according to a police report.

Details on the Crime

The burglary happened between the evening of July 16 and morning of July 17 last year while renovation work was being carried out on the Jobs house, which is now occupied by Jobs’ wife. McFarlin jumped over a construction fence and entered the house through its garage. Once inside, he stole two iMacs, three iPads, three iPods, one Apple TV box, a diamond necklace and earrings, and several other items.

Not the First Time

McFarlin admitted to the burglary under questioning by Palo Alto police and said he had stolen from other homes in the San Francisco Bay Area, including two homes in Marin County, four homes in San Francisco County and one home in Alameda County. He admitted keeping hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of property from those burglaries at his home and at a storage locker. The property included computers, jewelry, furniture and a solid silver bar, according to the Santa Clara District Attorney’s office.

Palo Alto Has Burglaries Increase Before

It’s true that Palo Alto has seen its fair share of burglary spikes – including a story I just saw this morning about eight burglaries taking in place in eight days (February 8 – 15). That’s just last week!

But let’s get back to the Jobs residence. As a career security professional, it’s hard for me to imagine why a furnished home under renovation would not have a monitored alarm system in place – especially with residential crime on the upswing. After all, the shift to safer wireless monitoring means there is no phone line required: when you add the benefit of interactive services and round-the-clock fire monitoring, it’s easy to see why more builders are using these systems to protect all their projects, including new construction.

FrontPoint specializes in this kind of technology: we’re the recognized leader in wireless home security because we combine the most advanced home security with the latest home automation services. Whether it’s more reliable wireless monitoring, notifications and remote arming, video features, or using apps to control lights, locks, and thermostats, FrontPoint has the solution. We provide peace of mind, with systems that are safer, smarter, simpler, more affordable, and virtually impossible to defeat – that’s why FrontPoint is the #1 ranked alarm company in the US.

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