Police: stalker bored hole in victim's bedroom - twice

MOUNT VERNON, Wash. -- A 26-year old Mount Vernon man was jailed Thursday after police say he bored a hole in a wall -- twice -- to spy on a woman he was infatuated with.

The victim told police she heard a noise coming from outside her apartment on N. 17th Street earlier this week, so she called 911. When police arrived, they found the suspect, Gonzalo Ortiz-Navarrete, standing inside the victim's apartment, and a hole drilled into the wall.

"We believe that he had entered a storeroom on the back side of her studio apartment and bored a hole so that he could see into the bedroom area of the home," said Lt. Chris Cammock with the Mount Vernon Police Department. "He's in a place where he's not supposed to be, looking into an area that's very personal and private. That's illegal."

The victim told police she'd had a similar problem three months prior, when she discovered a hole in the wall of her apartment, heard some noise, and found Ortiz-Navarrete in the storeroom. The victim confronted Ortiz-Navarrete, told him never to return again, and fixed the hole in the wall, Cammock said. The victim did not call police.

Ortiz-Navarrete has no criminal history in Washington State and is not a registered sex offender. He was booked into the Skagit County Jail.

Detectives believe the case is an isolated one because Ortiz-Navarrete met the victim about a year ago after doing some work on her car. He expressed interest in the victim at the time but she rebuffed his advances, Cammock said.

"This type of behavior, if it doesn't go (checked), can manifest itself more. We don't know what that potential is," Cammock added. "That's always our concern in this case. This is precursor behavior that could lead to something more aggressive."