Amazon delivery van, 71 packages stolen in El Sobrante

Photo credit: Contra Costa CHP

Rather than the typical route of swiping packages from porches, these thieves went straight for the Amazon van.

A man is in custody and another is being sought in connection with the theft of an Amazon delivery van and dozens of packages in El Sobrante on Thursday, July 11, according to the California Highway Patrol.

At about 1:20 p.m. that day, an Amazon worker was delivering packages from his Ram 1500 work van when, at a stop in the El Sobrante area, he exited the van to check on a partially open door, CHP said.

One of the suspects, believed to be 48-year-old Charles Farmer, used the opportunity to jump into the van and drive away. The suspect drove the van to a location in El Sobrante, parking behind several freight containers to keep hidden. Then, he and his accomplice, identified as Steve Ackelbein, loaded 71 packages from the van into Ackelbein’s Chevrolet Silverado, the CHP said. They then drove away to a local residence.

An investigation ensued, and with help from a local resident the CHP located the Silverado. A search warrant was issued at the home where the truck was parked in El Sobrante, resulting in the arrest of Ackelbein the day after the heist. He was booked on charges that include conspiracy, possession of stolen property and cargo theft.

Farmer, facing the same charges, was still on the lam and believed to be somewhere in West Contra Costa County.

Only one of the 71 packages were recovered, the CHP said.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Contra Costa CHP in Martinez (925) 646-4980.


  1. The person who car jacked the Amazon Delivery Van and stole 71 packages is Charles (Chucky)Farmer. He has been hanging out in El Sobrante since the robbery on July 9th. This morning he was arrested. I can tell you this brought a sense of comfort to myself and many others. He is a dangerous and violent drug addict and career criminal. I was shocked to know Chucky was seen 20 min ago. He was at a house in El Sob looking for drugs and apparently without a trouble in R can this be? How does someone commit a crime such as car jacking, be named on all the local news stations and not be brought to law. How does someone the Sheriff and CHP ask the public for help locating, walk around in his little home town for weeks after the fact And, when he finally does get arrested,hours later is out procuring drugs without a care in the world.Charles Farmer will be out tonight committing crimes. Will someone please help?


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