HESPERIA A man authorities believe may be linked to a slew of vehicle and residential burglaries was arrested Thursday morning after being chased down by deputies and concerned neighbors, San Bernardino County Sheriff's Hesperia station officials said Friday.


Jerome Higgins, 20, of Hesperia was arrested for burglary and possession of stolen property after he was found hiding in a backyard following a foot pursuit, Sgt. Colleen Kuhn said.


A little before 10 a.m., a concerned citizen noticed a suspicious vehicle parked in the 16700 block of Sultana Street. The citizen confronted the man and asked him what he was doing in the neighborhood, officials said. Instead of responding, the suspicious man, described as a young black man, ran off. The citizen then called sheriff's officials to report the incident.


About 15 minutes later at a nearby apartment complex, a concerned woman called authorities when she said a young black man had knocked on her door, according to a release. When she answered the door, the man told her he had the wrong apartment. Shortly after, she told investigators she heard glass breaking in one of the nearby apartment units.


Deputy Chuck Foster arrived at the complex and saw the man, later identified as Higgins, leaving the apartments, Roxanne Walker, spokeswoman for the Hesperia station, said. When Higgins saw Foster, he took off running.


Several residents joined in the pursuit as Higgins jumped over fences, Walker said.


Higgins was eventually found hiding in a backyard with property taken from the apartment, officials said.


Investigators are looking into the possibility that Higgins may be linked to a string of recent vehicle and residential break-ins, Kuhn said.


Anyone with information on this case is asked to contact the Hesperia station at (760) 947-1500 or call WeTip at (800) 78-CRIME.


Beatriz E. Valenzuela may be reached at (760) 951-6276 or at BValenzuela@VVDailyPress.com.