By Jeremy Pittari, Item Staff Writer
The Picayune Item
Five teenagers have been arrested and charged with a string of vehicle burglaries in the Picayune area.
Picayune Police Assistant to the Chief of Police Jeremy Magri said the case took several weeks to solve, but led to the arrest of 18-year-old Kelton Spann of 503 Fourth St., and four juveniles aged 16, 16, 15, and 14.
The investigation began after the department received seven reports of vehicle burglaries, in which the suspects typically took cash, cell phones or computer tablets from vehicles in the area of Goodyear Boulevard and West Canal Street, said Magri.
Witnesses gave descriptions of the juveniles seen in the area prior to the burglaries, which led to the identification of those involved, Magri said. Surveillance video also was obtained from businesses in the area, including PJ’s Coffee House where a tip jar had been taken on Feb. 22, and later determined to have been taken by the 15-year-old, Magri said. Three of the other suspects also were seen in the video.
Two of the suspects seen in the PJ’s video were caught by other surveillance video breaking into a vehicle on West Canal Street, Magri said.
Spann is charged with one count of commercial burglary, and one of the 16-year-olds is charged with one count of commercial burglary, Magri said. The second 16-year-old is charged with two counts of commercial burglary, the 15-year-old is charged with seven counts of commercial burglary and petit larceny for the theft of the tip jar, Magri said. The 14-year-old is charged with one count of commercial burglary, Magri said.
Magri said some of the items recovered through the investigation have not been linked to the reported vehicle burglaries, including an iPod touch with a personalized inscription on the back. Anyone who was the victim of a vehicle burglary can learn if the items stolen have been recovered by calling the Investigation Division at 601-798-0374.