Monday, November 17, 2008

About Those Car Break-ins

From HoCoPo PR:

Howard County Police have made 10 arrests over the last few weeks of people involved in a series of car break-ins throughout the county.

Since the beginning of the year, thefts from vehicles have increased 43 percent for a total of 3,013, compared to 2,105 during the same time frame in 2007. Howard County Police dedicated a number of resources to fight the increasing problem, assigning special undercover squads and uniformed police details, as well as conducting crime prevention meetings and notifications by phone through the county’s automated Community Notification System.

“We recognize the problems these crimes create for our communities,” said Police Chief William McMahon. “These arrests are the result of hard work by our patrol officers and detectives, as well as cooperation from our citizens. Community partnerships with police are critical in combating crime.”

As a result of the efforts to address these crimes, the following people have been charged:

Patrol units arrested CHRISTOPHER MCGOWENS, 20, of Catonsville, MATTHEW SHAFFER, 18, of Baltimore, and a 16-year-old male from Baltimore after receiving a call for suspicious subjects at Macalpine Rd. and Crescent Rd. in Ellicott City Sept. 29.

Upon locating the vehicle, officers found two stolen cell phones and three stolen GPS units inside the car, along with various electronics chargers, credit cards, gift cards and cash from six victims. The subjects also were charged with possession of drugs.

Police were called Oct. 10 to Saint Paul St. in Ellicott City after a woman interrupted a theft from her vehicle. Patrol units located and arrested ROBERT SCHMITT, 28, of Catonsville.

Officers stopped and arrested JUSTIN BARNABAE, 20, and ADAM JEPPI, 19, both of Catonsville Oct. 15 for possession of drugs. Inside the vehicle officers located stolen items from five separate thefts that took place earlier that day, including two stolen GPS units, a stolen checkbook and credit card, and various stolen property. Both were charged with crimes related to the thefts.

While conducting the above investigation, police further determined that STEPHANIE BARNABAE had used a stolen check from the property found in Justin Barnabae’s vehicle at the 999 Tavern in Jessup. Stephanie Barnabae was charged with theft and fraud.

KEVIN FEUERSTEIN, 18, of Catonsville, was charged Oct. 22 with the theft of a GPS unit that was stolen Sept. 16, after police were alerted that he pawned the unit in Anne Arundel County.

PHILIP ROSENBLATT, 22, of Pikesville, and SETH KLIMEN, 23, of Reisterstown, were charged Oct. 31 with breaking into two vehicles on June 22 and stealing credit cards and electronics after Arlington, Va., police investigating a credit card fraud alerted Howard County Police that the credit card being used belonged to a Howard County resident.

Police are continuing to investigate car break-ins throughout Howard County. Anyone with information should call 410-313-STOP.

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