South San Francisco police arrested a man suspected of
stealing iPhones and iPads from a number of Peninsula businesses in recent months, officials said Saturday.
Nicholas Anthony Simat was identified as a suspect in the string of thefts dating back to late February after police released surveillance photos and a description earlier this month, police said.
In the thefts, a man entered businesses in South San Francisco, Burlingame and Daly City and had long conversations with employees, police said.
The suspect called himself "Mike" or "Michael" and told them he was a "computer guy" who had just inherited a sum of money, police said.
When employees were distracted or called away, the suspect stole their phones.
A 26-year-old transient, Simat was located at a friend's house at Pinole and arrested after he allegedly admitted to detectives that he was responsible for the thefts, according to police.
He allegedly said he was addicted to heroin and oxycontin and stole the phones to fund his drug habit.
Simat was booked into San Mateo County Jail on 10 counts of burglary and is being held in lieu of $272,500 bail, police said.
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