Suspect In East County Burglaries Arrested

Philip Murphy Accused In At Least 3 Burglaries

A suspect in at least three burglaries in an East County neighborhood was arrested early Monday after fleeing from a home when confronted by a resident.

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Philip Murphy, 30, was arrested in connection with the burglaries on Joanne Way in El Cajon.

On Monday, 10News spoke with two of the families who were victims of the early morning burglaries. They showed 10News how the burglar attempted to – or successfully – got inside.

One resident who had her purse stolen said the thief reached his arms through a cat door and unlocked the door from the inside.

Across the street from her home, the burglar pulled the screen off a window, climbed through an unlocked window into the garage, found a hidden key and attempted to unlock the back door.

A 38-year-old father of two inside the home heard someone trying to unlock the door and then saw a flashlight at the door. He grabbed the door handle as it was opening and slammed it shut. The intruder then ran off and the resident made an emergency call.

A patrol officer found Murphy several blocks away, apparently trying to hide on a dirt embankment, Sgt. Eric Taylor said. Police say the suspect, who surrendered when police brought in a police dog to go after him, was still carrying the victim's key, along with a purse belonging to the neighbor 10News interviewed.

"It was discovered that she was the victim of burglary that had yet to be discovered," the sergeant said. "Officers continued to investigate and located another victim next door, for a total of three burglaries."

Detectives believe Murphy also is responsible for other area home-invasion burglaries, most of which occurred while the victims were home, according to Taylor.

El Cajon police say they also questioned Murphy about the burglaries from two weeks ago and believe he is linked to a total of six home burglaries.

Murphy is being held at the San Diego Central Jail. Bail was set at $100,000. He is scheduled to be arraigned in El Cajon on Wednesday.

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