01/04/2012 11:02 pm ET Updated Mar 05, 2012

Telegraph Hill Burglar Trapped On Cliffside For 24 Hours And Counting (VIDEO)

UPDATE (12:03pm): The San Francisco Police Department reports that the suspect may have escaped down the cliff. "A neighbor who was aware that a burglary suspect was possibly hiding on the hillside, heard noises coming from the hillside area and observed a male sliding down the hill toward an opening in a fence," their statement read. "The neighbor observed the male subsequently peer through the fence and then walk out." The SFPD is continuing efforts to locate and identify the suspect.

A man suspected of a series of condo robberies in Telegraph Hill has been hiding out in the shrubs atop a cliffside for more than 24 hours, engaged in a cat-and-mouse game with local police.

Shortly before 5:30pm Tuesday evening, officers responded to a reported home burglary on Lombard Street just north of Coit Tower, according to SFPD Spokesman Albie Esparza. The suspect, meanwhile, fled to the top of the 200-foot cliff after allegedly stealing a ring from a nearby Kearny Street apartment. He has remained trapped in the brush ever since.


Police are continuously monitoring the area, but won't make physical contact with the unidentified man for fear of putting their own lives in danger.

"Given the nature of the incident, SFPD has determined that attempts to apprehend this person could potentially place him and public safety officials at risk of injury," Officer Carlos Manfredi said in a statement. "We believe that the risks associated with an attempt to physically contact this person far outweigh the benefits."

Authorities describe the suspect as a 5-foot-7, 170-pound caucasian in his 20s or 30s. He has refused all offers of assistance from both officers and crisis negotiators, saying he would "like the police to leave," according to SF Weekly.

Police will continue to monitor the area until he has safely descended the steep, 10-story slope. "The police department is here to help this fellow, whoever he is, off the hillside if he needs it," Commander Richard Corriea told CBS News.

Of course, like any self-respecting piece of bizarre San Francisco crime news, the burglar already has his own Twitter account. "I'm seriously just a hiker," it reads. "What's all the fuss?"

Take a look at footage from the standoff below, courtesy of CBS News: