A Stockton man confronted a stranger rummaging through his neighbor's car on Sandalwood Drive, using his cellphone to record the encounter.
"He looked real surprised. He said the door was open but I seen him open it, you know what I mean?" Roderick Taylor said.
Taylor believes the man had broken into his neighbors car and was in the process of looking for things to steal, when he was interrupted.
"Our car had just been broken into a week before. In fact, two of our cars got broken into actually like in the same week. So I was just outside checking things out and I kept my eye on him," Taylor said.
In the cellphone video, Taylor is heard asking the man if the car was his. The man admits that the car is not his. When Taylor asked why he was inside of it, the man said the door was open. When Taylor told him to close the door or he would call police, the man calmly walked away.
"Whatever he's going through he's in enough pain already you know what I mean? So I just let him be," Taylor said.
He told FOX40 he chose not to call police about what appeared to him to be a car burglary, because he wanted to give the man a chance to stop his behavior and eventually turn his life around.
"You know when you start making money, you feel proud and you feel like you hold yourself to a higher standard and if people made an honest living they would decide to change their lives more," Taylor said.
Stockton Police said especially around the holidays, cars become treasure troves for thieves. They wanted to remind the public to keep valuables out of sight, and to always lock their car doors.
"This should be a wakeup call for anybody that's watching that you know not to leave stuff in your car, definitely not around this time of the year," Taylor said.