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Update: Burglary suspect found, arrested by authorities 

Update posted Sept. 29, 6:30 a.m.: 

Michael Giovanni Benadiba

Michael Giovanni Benadiba.

Michael Giovanni Benadiba of San Luis Obispo arrested after short pursuit

– At midnight on Thursday the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office located wanted burglary suspect Michael Giovanni Benadiba, a 25-year-old resident of San Luis Obispo, on foot near the intersection of Pike and Elm in Arroyo Grande. When deputies attempted to stop him, Benadiba ran away but was taken into custody after a short pursuit.

He was arrested for the following charges and booked into San Luis Obispo County Jail:

  • PC 459 – Felony burglary
  • PC 487(D)(2) – Seven counts of felony grand theft of a firearm
  • PC 30305(A) – Felon in possession of ammunition
  • PC 29800(A)(1) – Felon possessing a firearm
  • PC 594(B)(2) – Misdemeanor vandalism
  • PC 148(A)(1) – Misdemeanor obstructs/resist a police officer
  • HS 11364(A) – Misdemeanor possession of paraphernalia


Additional charges will be requested as detectives have reportedly linked Benadiba to the commercial burglary that occurred on the 700 block of Fiero approximately two weeks ago. Benadiba is being held at the county jail, with bail set at $255,000.


Original story posted Sept. 27, 6:45 a.m.:

Burglary suspect crashed Prius into Big 5 location, stole guns

– On Saturday, Sept. 23, at 2 a.m., the San Luis Obispo Police Department received an alarm call from Big 5 Sporting Goods at 3910 Broad Street. The alarm indicated glass had been broken at the front of the store. When officers arrived, they found a 2006 Prius had been driven through the glass front doors and security screen leading into the store. The Prius had stolen license plates that had been reported to SLOPD on Sept. 12. Police say the Prius is registered to Michael Giovanni Benadiba, a 25-year-old resident of San Luis Obispo.

Responding officers found the back door of the business propped open, and in an adjacent field, they found seven rifles as well as ammunition. The rifles had been taken from the store, along with the security cable and shelf, all still attached. All the firearms stolen from the store were located, but Benadiba evaded officers and was not found that evening.

Further investigation showed that Benadiba had been in Big 5 the previous day and had reportedly stolen a pellet gun. Items recovered in the Prius were found to be from an unreported commercial burglary in San Luis Obispo committed within the past two weeks.

The SLOPD is seeking the community’s help in locating Benadiba. Anyone who can provide information should call Detective Inglehart at (805) 594-8074 or Crime Stoppers at (805) 549-7867.


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