Gabriel Vasquez Garza, a Burlington teen waiting to be tried for his alleged involvement in the rape of a woman, has been implicated in a new case – residential burglary.
However, the 18-year-old insisted during an interview with police detectives he did not break into the victim’s home, claiming people are setting him up with the crime.
Garza, who is charged in that case with second-degree burglary, will face a Des Moines County jury March 6.
A pretrial conference will take place Feb. 13.
Police said officers started investigating the case soon after they received a report from the resident of 107 S. Leebrick St., who said his home was burglarized.
Several game systems, along with jewelry and a .32-caliber Beretta semiautomatic pistol reportedly were taken.
During the course of the investigation, Garza’s name, along with another 18-year-old Burlington resident authorities identified as Zachary Judd, came up.
Police said when they interviewed the pair, investigators found the pattern on the bottom of the shoes Garza was wearing matched the impressions officers found near the front door of the South Leebrick home.
Judd reportedly told detectives he was with Garza when Garza kicked in the front door, insisting he left as soon as that happened.
He noted, however, seeing Garza go inside the home, authorities said.
Judd went back to his home on South Gunnison Street. Moments later, Garza came out carrying a XBox 360, a handgun and marijuana.
Detectives said, Garza denied any part in the burglary and insisted “people were trying to set him up.”
March 6 also is listed as a temporary date for which Garza will stand trial for third-degree sexual assault – a different case.
Prosecutors allege he and another Burlington man, Michael Lamont Black, 40, raped a 19-year-old woman who was passed out on a porch just outside a home.