A convicted felon accused of breaking into a San Jacinto man’s home, threatening him and fleeing with stolen items pleaded not guilty Thursday to burglary and other charges.
Muhammad Shehzad Akhtar, 23, of Banning was arrested Monday after he was apprehended by Banning police in connection with a separate incident.
Along with the burglary count, Akhtar is charged with making death threats and parole violations.
He was arraigned before Riverside County Superior Court Judge Timothy Hollenhorst, who scheduled a felony settlement conference for Dec. 20 at the Banning Justice Center and ordered the defendant held on $135,000 bail at the nearby Smith Correctional Facility.
According to sheriff’s Sgt. Ken Hoon, about 3 p.m. Sunday, Akhtar allegedly forced his way into a residence in the 700 block of Sweet Clover Loop, near Sanderson Avenue, in San Jacinto.
Hoon alleged that the parolee grabbed various items inside the home, then helped himself to food in the kitchen, where the victim encountered him after returning to his property.
“The suspect threatened the victim’s life and then fled the residence,” the sergeant said, adding that Akhtar ran out allegedly carrying the items he had stolen.
The homeowner was not injured and called 911.
Deputies gathered evidence at the scene, including latent fingerprints and shoe prints, as well as security video camera surveillance footage, pointing to Akhtar as the alleged perpetrator, according to Hoon.
An alert was broadcast to surrounding law enforcement agencies and on Monday, Banning police notified deputies that they had taken the defendant into custody for alleged drug-related activity.
According to court records, Akhtar has prior convictions for assault with a deadly weapon resulting in great bodily injury, trespassing and possession of drug paraphernalia.