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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Columbia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, January 23, 2015

District Man Pleads Guilty To Charges In Burglary Of Office Complex-Defendant Intended To Steal Prescription Medications, Other Items-

     WASHINGTON – David Pitts, 38, of Washington, D.C., pled guilty today to charges stemming from an incident last year in which he broke into an office building in Northwest Washington after setting a series of fires, U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. announced.

     Pitts pled guilty in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia to charges of second-degree burglary and first-degree identity theft. The Honorable Zoe Bush scheduled sentencing for March 20, 2015. Pitts faces a statutory maximum of 15 years in prison for the burglary charge and up to 10 years for the identity theft charge, as well as potential financial penalties.

     According to a proffer of facts submitted at the plea hearing, on Sept. 4, 2014, at about 12:50 a.m., Pitts set a chair and bottles on fire near the parking attendant booth of the parking garage at an office complex in the 3300 block of New Mexico Avenue NW. The fire destroyed the chair and caused damage to the attendant booth. He then walked to another part of the complex and twice lit some newspapers on fire on the ground; this caused no damage.

     Minutes later, Pitts walked to a wooded area near the adjacent Embassy Park complex and set another small fire. This fire grew, and had to be extinguished by the District of Columbia Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department.

     After setting the fires, Pitts entered the office building on New Mexico Avenue, which houses doctors’ offices and a pharmacy, with the intent to steal prescription medications, controlled substances, and prescription pads. He was arrested at the scene. A subsequent search of the defendant’s apartment led to the recovery of over 5,300 pills, blank prescription pads from at least nine different doctors’ offices, and other items. Many of the blank prescription pads were for doctors who had offices in the complex. Additional blank prescription pads were found in a search of the defendant’s office.

     In announcing the plea, U.S. Attorney Machen commended the work of those who investigated the case from the Metropolitan Police Department, the Montgomery County, Md. Police Department, and the District of Columbia Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department. He also expressed appreciation for the work of former Assistant U.S. Attorney Brittain Shaw, who investigated the case, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Bruckmann, who is prosecuting the matter.

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Updated February 19, 2015