The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

July 13, 2013

Neighbors help Ashtabula police break burglary ring

By WARREN DILLAWAY - warren@starbeacon.com
Star Beacon

ASHTABULA — Neighbors watching for neighbors helped police break an apparent burglary ring on Wednesday when a resident in the vicinity of 57th and Washington streets called police and another resident chased the alleged perpetrator, said Lt. William Parkomaki of the Ashtabula Police Department.

He said there were at least eight burglaries in the 57th Street and Adams Avenue area since July 1.

“We were fortunate to get enough officers into the area that we were able to find (the alleged burglar),” Parkomaki said. He had jewelry and shoes on his person when the police found him hiding, he said.

Upon further investigation police obtained information regarding a suspect in Ashtabula Township allegedly involved in a merchandise for drugs operation and a search warrant was served on Thursday, Parkomaki said.

“We are searching for a 29-year-old black male,” Parkomaki said of the suspect who was not home when the search warrant was served, he said.

“To start out we have five counts of receiving stolen property and five counts of weapons under a disability,” he said.

“I think he was a drug dealer that was taking the items for drugs,” Parkomaki said.

Ashtabula Law Director Michael Franklin said the suspect has an attempted felonious assault conviction, a felony drug possession charge and more than one receiving stolen property charge. He said most were in Cuyahoga County, but police believe 3479 Fargo Drive, where the search warrant was served, was his main residence.

Police recovered more than $10,000 worth of merchandise at the Fargo Drive home in Ashtabula Township. One large screen television, worth approximately $2,000, five other televisions, a lap-top computer, five guns, ammunition, power tools and other merchandise was confiscated.

Police said they have already connected much of the merchandise with its rightful owners.

Franklin said the items will be returned to their owners as soon as possible. He said a request for a judge to allow photographs of the items to be provided at trial, instead of the items themselves, will be made and, if approved, the items will be returned, he said.