Stratford Man Pleads Guilty to Federal Car Theft Offense
Leonard C Boyle, Acting United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that EDWIN CORDERO, 20, of Stratford, pleaded guilty today before U.S. District Judge Kari A. Dooley in Bridgeport to a federal car theft offense.
According to court documents and statements made in court, the FBI, Connecticut State Police and local police have been investigating multiple car theft rings in Connecticut, and violent crimes that are being committed using stolen vehicles.
The investigation revealed that Cordero, Christopher Mulkern and others have stolen numerous motor vehicles, and used the stolen vehicles to travel throughout Connecticut and to neighboring states to steal other vehicles and the valuables inside, including credit cards, cellular telephones, and firearms. Cordero and Mulkern typically frequented upper middleclass neighborhoods to go “car-checking” or “jigging,” which involves an attempt to open the door of a motor vehicle and, if successful, steal the vehicle and/or valuables inside.
On December 1, 2020, Cordero and Mulkern stole a Porsche Panamera from a residence in Westport, Connecticut. Shortly after midnight on December 2, law enforcement in Westerly, Rhode Island, identified the stolen Porsche and attempted to stop the car. The Porsche drove recklessly, at speeds of at least 86 mph, between Rhode Island and Connecticut, and evaded police who, for safety reasons, were forced to terminate pursuit.
At approximately 4 a.m. on December 2, Cordero, Mulkern and others used the stolen Porsche to steal a Dodge Challenger from a residence in Milford, Connecticut. In the evening of December 2, Stratford Police spotted and attempted to stop the Porsche, which was being driven by Mulkern and in which Cordero was a passenger. During the pursuit, Mulkern rammed a car stopped at a red light at an intersection, drove up on the sidewalk and through the red light, and then struck a second vehicle, causing the second vehicle to flip onto its roof. Mulkern drove the damaged Porsche onto I-95 into Bridgeport, where he and Cordero were apprehended as they attempted to enter another stolen Audi A4 that was parked on Gregory Street. A search of the stolen Audi revealed approximately 13 key fobs for other vehicles, and a search of the Porsche revealed five cellphones. In addition, Cordero possessed a key fob for the stolen Dodge Challenger, which was subsequently located parked on Main Street in Bridgeport, and Mulkern possessed two stolen credit cards.
Cordero pleaded guilty to one count of transportation of a stolen vehicle, which carries a maximum term of imprisonment of 10 years. Judge Dooley scheduled sentencing for December 3, 2021.
Mulkern pleaded guilty to the same charge on April 30, 2021, and awaits sentencing.
Cordero and Mulkern, who are both detained, have also agreed to pay restitution to at least seven owners of vehicles they stole and/or damaged.
This matter is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Connecticut State Police and the Stratford, Milford, Stonington, Westport, Bridgeport, New Haven, Meriden, and Westerly (R.I.) Police Departments. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarah P. Karwan.