Man Gets 30 Days' Jail for Taco Theft

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- A man who pretended to be a CEO complaining about his fast-food order in a taco scam was sentenced to 30 days in jail after authorities saw the prank in an online video.

Rialto police said it was an easy case to crack because the video, called "How to Scam Del Taco" and posted on YouTube.com, shows Robert Echeverria, 32, calling the restaurant about 50 miles east of Los Angeles on Feb. 19.

In a friendly tone he claims to be a CEO named "Robert Kennedy" who has already spoken to the store's manager and corporate office about some unwanted sour cream and the lack of a receipt in a previous order.

"I love your guys' tacos," he said.

One of his two 18-year-old co-stars is later shown walking into the restaurant and claiming the food. The video ends with the three men feasting and laughing.

Echeverria even provided a pair of personal phone numbers in the video, Rialto police Lt. Joe Cirilo said.

A Rialto resident saw the video online last month and called police, authorities said.

On Tuesday, Echeverria pleaded guilty to misdemeanor burglary and received a sentence of 30 days in jail, three years' probation and one special condition: a ban from the Rialto Del Taco.

"I tried to get him to stay away from all Del Tacos, but the judge said just the one," Deputy District Attorney Doug Schaller said.

Schaller said the two teens can expect a similar plea deal, most likely minus the jail time.


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