AUSTIN, Texas — It's a common sight on the news and online: videos of package thieves getting away with people's merchandise.
However, you don't often hear about police officers finding and arresting them.
But thanks to a vigilant neighbor, three North Austin families recently got their stolen packages back.
"We've been dealing with this for some time now, so it's nothing new to the neighborhood," Linzy Ugarte told KVUE.
It's for that reason Ugarte likes to keep an eye out for anything unusual near her home on Wildcat Pass and Wolverine Street.
On Monday afternoon, her watchful eyes paid off.
"Just happened to look out my window and saw a car parked in front of my neighbor's house," she said.
She saw its driver, a man in a navy-colored hoodie, walking back to his SUV with packages in his hands.
"It kinda took my brain a second to be like, 'Wait a minute. He's not delivering packages. He's taking them,'" Ugarte said.
She managed to get photos of the man and his SUV and called police. Within minutes, Ugarte said, officers found his car and chased him.
Police ended up arresting 37-year-old Juan Evel Hernandez outside a grocery store's women's bathroom on West St. John's Avenue, less than a mile away from Ugarte's neighborhood.
The stolen packages were still inside his car, according to police. One of those packages belonged to Katie Sammann and her five-year-old pug, Puzzles.
"I was so surprised to have a policeman knocking on my door like, an hour later, holding a big box of dog food for us. It was great," Sammann said.
Sammann is thankful police responded so quickly, but she's still trying to understand why someone would steal a box so clearly marked.
"Like, what? Is he going to resell prescription dog food? I'm sure it's not worth it for him," she said.
According to Hernandez's arrest affidavit, he stole packages containing Ugarte's dog food, someone's kitchen bags and children's books and a computer desk. Combined, the items cost less than $200.
Online jail records show Hernandez is charged with three counts of theft of property less than $100 with a previous conviction and evading arrest/detention with a vehicle. A judge set his total bond at $45,000.
According to the Texas Department of Public Safety, Hernandez has a criminal record dating back to 1999, with convictions for a number of thefts and burglaries.