Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Nanaimo Civilian Nabs Thief

Civilian Jeff Elston
Ends Mini Crime Spree

A concerned citizen was instrumental in assisting police with the arrest of a male Saturday night for a mini crime spree in a north Nanaimo subdivision.

It all started when police received several calls around nine o’clock on Saturday night from home owners on Fillinger Crescent reporting a suspicious young male in their neighborhood. They told 911 operators the male was walking around looking into cars and checking doors to various residences. Officers quickly attended but were unable to locate him. A short time later, a second call was received, this time of a theft of liquor from Pipers Beer and Wine store located nearby on Hammond Bay Rd. The description provided of the suspect matched that of the suspect reported earlier.

Unfortunately for the thief a local resident, whose car was checked early wasn’t too happy and took it upon himself to find the suspect. Jeff Elston’s perseverance paid off and sure enough he spotted the suspect on a nearby trail. Elston age 23 confronted the suspect and after a few moments of indecision the suspect wisely decided to stay put. Elston also noted several liquor bottles sticking out of the thief’s packsack and the biggest find was seeing a 50" Plasma TV and Play station lying on the ground next to the thief. By this time five to six neighbors had arrived and the thief wisely decided to put and wait for police to arrive.The suspect age 20 and a resident of the area was arrested, transported to cells and held over night.

The last missing piece of the crime spree came together when a young female called police later that night to report the house she was house sitting on Fillinger Crescent had been broken into and their large screen TV and Play station were missing .She said they forgot to lock the front door when they went out and it appears the thief simply opened up the door, walked in and carried out their appliances.

The male was released from custody Saturday afternoon on a Promise to Appear, charged with one count of Break and Enter. He is expected to make his first court appearance at the end of the month. Police later returned the liquor and stolen TV and Play station to their respective owners.The thief when arrested was under the influence of alcohol, noted attending police officers.

“We are extremely appreciative of the efforts of everyone involved, particularly with Mr Elston’s diligence in tracking down the thief .Without his involvement I'm sure the TV, Play Station and liquor would have been long gone. This is however a good time to remind the public about keeping their doors and windows locked at all times .This particular incident(break and enter) could have been avoided if the doors had been locked. Locking doors reduces the opportunity and thus takes away the chance you will become a crime statistic” said Constable Gary O’Brien, media spokesperson for the Nanaimo RCMP.


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