Two teens broke into the Redwood City home of one’s ex-girlfriend and demanded jewelry from her mother while brandishing a machete and handgun, according to prosecutors who charged both yesterday with residential burglary and home invasion robbery with the use of deadly weapons.
Juan Daniel Ceballos, 19, and Cristian Joshua Estrada, 17, both pleaded not guilty and return to court July 19 for a preliminary hearing. Although Estrada is a minor, prosecutors charged him as an adult. A third suspect remains at large and unidentified.
Estrada and the victim’s daughter once dated and had remained friendly, said District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe.
On the afternoon of Wednesday, July 3, Estrada allegedly left the Lanyard Drive home with the daughter so Ceballos and other male could break through the bedroom window. Ceballos allegedly had a machete and the other a handgun when they encountered the mother and asked her repeatedly, “Where’s the gold?”
After removing her jewelry and taking a jewelry box from another room, the teens took the crying woman to the garage and ordered her to open a safe, Wagstaffe said.
When her nerves prevented her from doing so, the pair left and, a few minutes later, Estrada and the girl returned, Wagstaffe said.
A police interview of Estrada turned up messages on his cellphone identifying Ceballos and the plan but not the third suspect.
A search of Ceballo’s home and car turned up the stolen property and machete, Wagstaffe said.
Prosecutors do not believe the daughter was involved.
Ceballos remains in custody in lieu of $250,000 bail. Estrada is held without bail.
(650) 344-5200 ext. 102