FedEx contract worker pleads not guilty to burglary charges

HAYWARD (KTVU) -- A FedEx contract driver from Hayward accused of stealing electronics from unlocked homes where he made deliveries in Menlo Park and Atherton pleaded not guilty to burglary charges Wednesday, San Mateo County prosecutors said.

Kevin Eugene Baker, 57, is accused of entering unlocked homes in Atherton on May 3 and May 5 as well as a home in Menlo Park on May 17.

Baker allegedly took a $1,500 laptop, a wallet and two iPads worth an estimated $2,000, but one of the homes had a surveillance system that caught him on camera and police traced the tablets to his home in Hayward, according to prosecutors.

"It's a strong case," District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said. "Laptop in one case, iPad's in the other. The trace was nice and easy due to the GPS."

Baker remains in custody on $800,000 bail, which Wagstaffe acknowledged is higher than usual for a burglary suspect but said is because he qualifies for California's three strikes law for repeat offenders.

"Whether we'd seek that on him is a different issue, but he's technically a three-striker which is why the bail's set so high," Wagstaffe said.

Baker is scheduled to return to court for a preliminary hearing on June 6. The San Mateo County Private Defender Program has been appointed to defend him, but as of this morning they had not yet assigned a specific attorney to the case and no one was available to comment.

"All individuals providing services on behalf of FedEx Ground undergo background checks that include a review of driving record and criminal history," FedEx Ground public relations manager Meredith Heighington Miller said in a statement. "We can confirm that this driver is no longer providing service on behalf of FedEx Ground."