Police: Man arrested in P.V. home invasion admitted planning heist

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by Catherine Holland

Video report by Kristine Harrington

Posted on July 10, 2013 at 12:59 PM

Updated Friday, Jul 12 at 5:22 PM

Map: Tatum & Roadrunner Road
28th Street & Greenway Road

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PARADISE VALLEY, Ariz. -- A Phoenix man is facing a slew of charges after allegedly using a stolen gun to rob a Paradise Valley resident and steal his Jeep in a burglary he told police he had been planning for weeks.

It happened shortly after 2 p.m. Tuesday at a home in the area of Tatum Boulevard north of Roadrunner Road.

According to police, Harley David Will, 26, was armed when he went to the house and confronted the homeowner and another man who lives there.

When the homeowner refused to be tied up, Will fired at him but missed. According to the probable cause statement filed with the court, he also shot at two pool-service men who had entered the backyard while Will was inside the house.

"The suspect stole cash from the victim, and fled the scene in the victim’s vehicle," Lt. Michael Cole of the Paradise Valley Police Department said in a news release.

By the time officers arrived on the scene, the suspect was gone with the Jeep and nearly $1,500 in cash, but the victim's pool-service men followed Will from the house and called 911 to give police dispatchers his location.

Phoenix police officers caught up with Will in the area of 28th Street and Greenway Road, about 8 miles from the crime scene, and took him into custody without incident.

According to Cole, the victim positively identified Will as the man who robbed him.

In addition, officers found a loaded .40 caliber semi-automatic pistol on the passenger seat of the stolen Jeep Will was driving. Cole said a Queen Creek gun shop reported that weapon and several others stolen in January 2012.

Police have not released any information about Will, but according to court paperwork, he is on the verge of losing his home.

During questioning, Will told officers the burglary was not random and that he actually had targeted the victim.

"Will stated he had planned to rob the victim for the past two or three weeks," reads the probable cause statement. "He even admitted to conducting surveillance on the house on at least two prior occasions."

It's not clear how Will might have selected the victim. The homeowner told police he does not know the suspect.

As far as planning, Will told officers that he made sure he had a weapon and plastic wire ties to restrain the victims while he took what he wanted.

At this point, it's not clear if Will has a criminal history, but a search of the Arizona Department of Correction inmate database turned up no records connected to the name Harley David Will.

Cole said police booked Will on charges of robbery, aggravated assault, kidnapping, theft, vehicle theft and burglary.

Although court paperwork describes Will as a flight risk, saying, "def will most likely flee the state if released," a  judge set a secured appearance bond of $200,000, and scheduled a status conference for July 17. A preliminary hearing will follow on July 19.

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