Tuesday, 28 May 2024

Second suspect in Thursday break-in captured

Sonoma County's Henry 1 helicopter assisted in the search. Hidden Valley Lake residents reported that the helicopter flew over the community for part of the morning, beginning at around 8 a.m. Photo by Eric Soderstrom.




HIDDEN VALLEY LAKE – Following a day of searching, the second suspect in an early morning break-in on Noble Ranch Road was captured by officials late Thursday.

Malcolm Safa Brown, 40, of Santa Rosa was arrested shortly after 5 p.m. after one of two victims from the morning break-in and assault identified him, according to officials at the scene.

Earlier in the afternoon, Charles William Burk, 30, was arrested when deputies found him under the exterior deck of a residence in the 19000 block of Stonegate Drive of Hidden Valley Lake. He had been spotted running into the home's garage; 10 minutes later, the homeowner reported a water bowl was in an odd position in front of a small access door under their deck, and Burk was taken into custody.

The two men are alleged to have broken into a home on Noble Ranch Road at approximately 7:20 a.m., where they assaulted the residents before fleeing in a white pickup, according to Capt. James Bauman of the Lake County Sheriff's Office.

The two men in the pickup collided with a sheriff's patrol car before abandoning their vehicle on Spruce Grove Road South and fleeing into Hidden Valley Lake on foot, said Bauman.

Bauman said the sheriff's office sent out a phone alert to residents in a three-mile perimeter of where the men were believed to be, in the Greenridge and Stonegate communities. However, many area residents reported to Lake County News that they did not receive the notice.

The Sonoma County Sheriff's Office's Henry 1 helicopter assisted with the search from the air for a few hours during the middle of the morning while local sheriff's investigators and deputies combed the area for the men. Area schools also kept children on campuses longer in order to keep them safe while the search went on.

Burk was arrested shortly after 2 p.m. not long after deputies spotted him on foot in the Greenridge area and stopped him for questioning. He attempted to flee behind some nearby residences and was arrested following a house-to-house search, said Bauman.

At about 4:30 p.m. Bauman told Lake County News that the sheriff's office was suspending the search for the second suspect, who hadn't yet been identified.

However, as sheriff's personnel were leaving leave Hidden Valley Lake, Hidden Valley Security was reporting receiving calls about a shirtless male with buzz cut hair running down Foothill Road just after 4 p.m., according to reports at the scene.

Deputies returned to Hidden Valley Lake, where a California Highway Patrol officer had detained Brown at Highway 29 and Arabian Lane.

One of the victims of the morning assault was brought to the scene, where she identified Brown as one of the men who had broken into her home earlier that morning.

Burk, who has addresses in both Clearlake Oaks and Santa Rosa, is listed as a cement mason on his booking sheet, which was posted late Thursday. Bauman confirmed that Burk had previous contact with local law enforcement but did not give specifics.

He is facing a battery of felony charges, including attempted murder, attempted robbery, assault with a deadly weapon (that is not a firearm) on a peace officer, assault with a firearm, another charge of assault with a deadly weapon that is not a firearm and first degree burglary. Bail is set at $575,000.

Brown, a carpenter, is charged with four felony counts – attempted murder, attempted robbery, assault with a deadly weapon that's not a firearm and first-degree burglary, with bail set at $535,000.

Both Burk and Brown are scheduled to appear in court on Nov. 17, according to their booking sheets.

Harold LaBonte and Aimee Gonsalves contributed to this report.

E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


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