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Sirens & Gavels

Posts tagged: stolen cars

Police: Beware of panhandlers

Spokane police arrested a panhandler Thursday afternoon after discovering he had a stolen car.

A man left a vehicle parked near the Office Depot by Wellesley Avenue and Division Street and proceeded to the intersection with a cardboard sign to panhandle, according to a Spokane Police Department news release.

Officers discovered the car had been reported stolen from the South Hill area two days ago and arrested Alex D. Treadway, 30, as he returned to the vehicle after collecting money from a number of motorists.

Treadway was booked into Spokane County Jail for possession of a stolen vehicle. He is a convicted felon with numerous Spokane-area arrests, including felon in possession of a firearm, armed burglary, assault with a deadly weapon and theft, according to police.

“Consider carefully who you might be rolling your window for,” police Spokesman Sgt. Jason Hartman said in the news release.

“The Spokane Police Department wants to remind the public that a multitude of government and charitable services exist, especially downtown, to assist people with food, shelter and medical needs,” Hartman said. “Members of the department are aware of numerous instances where panhandled donations have not gone for the stated purpose.”

The Spokane City Council passed an ordinance in August banning panhandlers in certain areas from reaching into the street to take money from drivers.

The affected area is south of Boone Avenue, west of Hamilton Street, north of Seventh Avenue and east of the Maple-Ash corridor on major arterials, including state highway routes. It also includes interchanges along the entire Interstate 90 corridor inside the city of Spokane.

Car could hold clues in home invasion

Police are hoping fingerprints or DNA on a car stolen in a home-invasion robbery will help them identify suspects.

Officers found the 1997 Honda Civic stripped of its tires and wheels near West Gordon Avenue and West Glass Avenue in Spokane after it was stolen during a robbery at 2918 N. Hogan St., on June. 6.

The victim said a man he knew only as “Nike” arrived at his home with two men, including one who was holding a sawed-off shotgun. The gunman yelled “Where's the money? Where's the drugs?” and trashed the apartment as Nike and the other man also brandished guns, according to a search warrant filed this week. Police used the warrant to swab the Honda for possible fingerprints or DNA.

Another occupant of the apartment was pistol whipped. His roommate said he was robbed of $50, two laptops, a PlayStation 3 and stereo speakers.

It's unclear if the robbery is connected to other recent robberies, but the method of operation and suspects' descriptions is somewhat similar to that of a take-over style robbery that occurred at McDonald's, 4647 S. Regal St., May 25.

In that case, four men with ski masks targeted customers and employes with black semiautomatic handguns and a sawed-off, single-barrel shotgun. Detectives suspect that robbery may be connected to a take-over home-invasion robbery that occurred May 30 in the 4400 block of East 46th Avenue.

Another robbery involving four men in ski masks occurred early Friday, June 8, at the Zip Trip at 1523 W. 10th Ave., on the South Hill. Employees said the store was robbed at gunpoint by two white men and two Hispanic men wearing dark clothes and ski masks. Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Check at (509) 456-2233.

Woman sentenced in drug-binge attack

A woman who robbed a disabled man at knife point with her boyfriend last year has been sentenced to about seven years in prison.

Jeanette E. Menghini, 44, was given 87 months in prison after pleading guilty to second-degree robbery, first-degree burglary and second-degree taking a motor vehicle without permission last week in Spokane County Superior Court.

Menghini was arrested in September 2010 with her boyfriend, Ronald J. Schneider, who told police he was on a seven-month drug binge when he broke into a man's room at the Airway Express Motel, 3809 S. Geiger Blvd. and robbed him of cash, prescription drugs and his car at knife point, according to court documents.

Schneider was under investigation for a stolen car ring in Spokane and in Great Falls, Mont., where he resided. He's now serving 29 months in prison in Washington after pleading guilty to second-degree taking a motor vehicle without permission in April.

Menghini's extensive criminal history includes convictions for delivery of controlled substances, possession of controlled substances with intent to deliver and second-degree robbery.

She was twice wanted by Crime Stoppers before her case was resolved.

Woman wanted in drug-binge robbery

Crime Stoppers if offering a reward for tips that lead to the arrest of a woman accused of robbing a disabled man at knife point with her boyfriend last year.

Jeanette E. Menghini, 44, is wanted on a first-degree robbery charge after failing to show up for a court hearing this month. Her trial was to start today, according to court documents.

Menghini was arrested in September with her boyfriend, Ronald J. Schneider, who told police he was on a seven-month drug binge when he broke into a man's room at the Airway Express Motel, 3809 S. Geiger Blvd. and robbed him of cash, prescription drugs and his car at knife point, according to court documents.

Schneider was under investigation for a stolen car ring in Spokane and in Great Falls, Mont., where he resided. He's now serving 29 months in a Washington prison after pleading guilty to second-degree taking a motor vehicle without permission in April.

Menghini, 5-foot-7 and 135 pounds, last gave a home address in the 11900 block of East Broadway Avenue in Spokane Valley, according to Crime Stoppers.

Anyone with information on his current location is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS or submit tips online. Tipsters do not have to give their name to collect a reward but should leave a code name or number.

Budget cuts end WSP car theft unit

Car theft investigations in the Spokane area will drop beginning next month as the Washington State Patrol eliminates its auto theft unit.

The July 1 closure comes just after a national study was released showing the Spokane area was fourth in the nation for the rate of car theft in 2010.

“In the current budget climate, all state agencies are cutting muscle and bone,” said Bob Calkins, spokesman for the Washington State Patrol. “The fat was gone long ago.”

Read the rest of my story here.

Crash in stolen Honda leads to 2 arrests

An early-morning crash involving a stolen Honda led to two arrests and the discovery of drug material in the driver's purse today in north Spokane.

Rachel A. Banks, 24, and her passenger, Randy A. Fisher, 24, ran from the car after Banks crashed into the back of a Ford pickup parked in a driveway in the 700 block of West Wedgewood Avenue shortly after midnight today, authorities say.
 
Spokane County sheriff's deputies found Banks and Fisher walking near North Monroe Street and West Avon Avenue. Banks was wanted on a warrant for driving while suspended; Fisher had a warrant for city theft.
 
A neighbor identified them as the pair who fled the crash scene. Banks' purse contained a drug scale, meth pipe, a baggie with prescription rugs, shaved keys and a lug nut key, according to a news release.
 
Fisher was booked into jail for his warrant; Banks was booked for her warrant as well as second-degree possession of stolen property, hit and run, and two drug charges.

Wanted: Man accused of helping escapee

A Spokane man who police say allowed to jail escapee at his home is wanted by Crime Stoppers.

Arthur Garcia, 51, (right) is charged with possession of a stolen motor vehicle for a 1990 Jeep Cherokee discovered on his property on Nov. 29.

Jason W. Breedlove, 38, (below) told police of the stolen Jeep while an inmate at the Spokane County Jail, according to court documents.

Two days later, he was allowed to clean up snow with a work crew despite a recent recommendatipn that he placed in a more secure facility because of a felony warrant in Kootenai County.

Breedlove walked away from the clean up crew on Dec. 1. 

Anonymous tips led police to Garcia's home at 918 E. 10th Ave., where they say Garcia had earlier agreed to call 911 if Breedlove showed up.

Breedlove was in the backyard when officers arrived on Dec. 9. He was sentenced to three months in jail last month for the escape and is in custody in Kootenai County on 21 charges, including four counts of grand theft, four cunts of burglary and five counts of pharmacy violation/drug delivery.

Garcia, who's criminal history includes a single drug possession conviction, was arrested for misdemeanor rendering criminal assistance.

Garcia was charged with possession of a stolen motor vehicle last month. A $10,000 warrant was issued Feb. 16 after he failed to show up for an arraignment.

Anyone with information on his current location is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS or submit tips online

Suspect in S-R carjacking remains jailed

A man suspected of stealing a truck with a newspaper carrier still inside remains in jail on $3,000 bond.

Adrian B. Garcia, 22, was arrested on suspicion of theft of a motor vehicle and unlawful imprisonment after Spokesman-Review carrier Jeremy Wavra and his wife, Leigh Wavra, reported the theft near West Garland Avenue and North Washington Street about 2:19 a.m. on Sunday.

Leigh Wavra was in the back of the1984 Chevrolet S-10 when Garcia allegedly stole it as Jeremy Wavra delivered newspapers.

Garcia slowed to about 5 mph to allowed to her to get out of the car, according to court documents. The truck was found abandoned and Garcia was arrested near North Whitehouse Street and West Walton Avenue. He appeared in Superior Court on Monday.

Mohawked man wanted by police

Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for tips that help arrest a man suspected of possessing a stolen car.

Jedidah l. Selke, 36, was arrested Jan. 25 after a Spokane police officer spotted a stolen 1994 Acura Integra outside a home at 2718 W. Sharp Ave.

The officer watched the home until a tall man, later identified as Selke, got inside. Selke told police he'd been driving the car because he didn't want a friend to be arrested, according to court documents.

He was released from jail after charges weren't filed within 72 hours, then didn't show up for his arraignment Feb. 2.  A $5,000 warrant was issued Feb. 15.

Selke is also wanted on a $5,000 warrant for a drug possession charge from last summer.

Selke, 6-foot-6 and 200 pounds, last gave a home address in the 900 block of West Augusta Avenue.

Anyone with information on his current location is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS or submit tips online.

‘Sinful Nature’ tat is fugitive’s giveaway

Crime Stoppers is targeting a suspected car thief with “some fairly visible tattoos,” the organization announced. 

Zachariah Leonard Zech, 33, is wanted for second-degree taking a motor vehicle without permission.

He was arrested Aug. 11 after police stopped him at Spokane Community College in a stolen 1995 Honda.

There was a shaved key in the car's ignition, police said. Zech said a friend had told him he could use the car, which he claimed was parked near Rowan and Sanson with a key inside.

A $10,000 arrest warrant was issued Dec. 15 after he failed to show up for a court hearing.  Crime Stoppers issued a reward for information on his capture this week.

Zech, 5-foot-7 and 175 pounds, was last known to live in the 2700 block of East Sanson. He has several tattoos, including “Sinful Nature” on the left side of a his head and the infamous tear drop under his left eye.

Anyone with information on his current location is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS or submit tips online.

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