(Updated at 10:20 p.m.) A 60-year-old male real estate agent has been accused of stealing women’s clothing from a house that’s for sale in the Ballston neighborhood of Arlington, Va. The alleged incident was caught on the homeowner’s video surveillance system.
Stephen Brumme, of Silver Spring, Md., was arrested and charged with burglary and possession of burglarious tools after a homeowner on the 4100 block of 11th Street N. approached police with the video. The homeowner — we’ll call him William (not his real name) — spoke exclusively to ARLnow.com last month on the condition of anonymity.
According to William, the incident took place on Saturday, Feb. 9, while he and his wife were out of town, participating at an out-of-state athletic competition.
Brumme entered the house legally and signed in as a real estate agent, in advance of a client showing up to tour the home, but is seen on a surveillance camera going through what William said is his wife’s clothing, in a bedroom closet and a dresser. According to William, Brumme pocketed three of his wife’s shirts before the client showed up and Brumme is seen leaving the bedroom to answer the door.
William said he and his wife were “creeped out” by the video when they watched it.
“Our reaction was a feeling of being violated by a creep who wanted to go through our things,” he said. “I like to think that people are good, but often times they’re not.”
The video was recorded using a Dropcam, a camera that transmits and records video online via Wi-fi. William said the camera was in plain sight in the bedroom. He said the video also assisted him after he found a razor blade in his garbage disposal following some showings by other real estate agents.
Brumme was released on bail following his arrest. Police say his real estate license was “immediately suspended.” Cops are now asking other home sellers to come forward if they believe they might have been burglarized.
“His behavior leads us to believe there are additional victims,” said Arlington County Police Department spokesman Dustin Sternbeck. “He went straight to the closet and the drawers. He knew exactly what he was looking for.”
Amy homeowner who believes they might also have been a burglary victim is encouraged to contact ACPD at (703) 558-2222, or Det. Timothy Parsons at (703) 228-4172 or email@example.com.
Video and mugshot courtesy ACPD. Note: Sound might not be synced with video.