An ex-convict who posed as a caregiver to gain access to a 97-year-old Murrieta woman’s home, then stole cash and other items while inside the residence with a female accomplice, was sentenced Friday to 17 years in prison.
Brent Paul Longo, 31, pleaded guilty last month to two counts of burglary in connection with a Jan. 24 break-in at 38537 Calle De La Siesta.
As part of a plea agreement, the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office dropped grand theft and financial elder abuse charges in exchange for Longo’s guilty plea on the burglary counts.
Longo attempted to withdraw his plea today during a hearing at the Southwest Justice Center before Superior Court Judge Timothy Freer, who denied the motion and imposed a 12-year prison term for the burglary charges and added five years to the sentence because of Longo’s prior felony convictions for burglary and drug possession.
Longo’s accomplice, 45-year-old Dianne Escarsega, also pleaded guilty June 5 to burglary and was sentenced to a year in jail and three years probation.
Longo and Escarsega went to the home of a woman residing in the area of the Warm Springs Knolls community, Murrieta police Lt. Tony Conrad said.
Longo and Escarsega persuaded the victim, whose name was not released, that they were health managers from Kaiser Permanente and were visiting to ensure her well-being.
“While inside the residence, conducting the mock house check, the (suspects) stole several credit cards, cash and a handgun,” Conrad said.
“They left the residence and fled the scene in a black Dodge Charger.”
Investigators learned the pair had used the victim’s bank automated teller machine card and obtained a surveillance photograph of the female suspect, which was circulated on fliers throughout the local area, Conrad said.
Detectives received tips identifying Escarsega as a suspect, leading to her arrest a few days later.
Longo was identified soon after, and according to Conrad, investigators arrested him in Menifee on Feb. 10.