February 12, 1995 in City

Teen Crime Spree Comes To End Boys Confess To Stealing $150,000 In Property

Associated Press
 

They burglarized homes, took a dozen cars, shot at a bystander, and stole guns, bullet-proof vests and Mace from the police.

In their downtime, the four southern Idaho teens munched on Egg McMuffins, smoked marijuana and drank.

It all happened in five days, in two states, with 30 police cars on their trail, say Twin Falls and Jerome authorities.

Three of the boys were arrested Wednesday night, and a fourth on Thursday. They have been charged with grand theft and other crimes. Their names are not being released because they are juveniles.

Police are still trying to trace the sequence of events, but they believe the boys started breaking into homes and stealing cars early last week.

“We haven’t shaken everything from the tree yet,” said Chief Investigator Bob Gauthier of the Twin Falls Sheriff’s department.

The boys zigzagged through Twin Falls, Jerome, Gooding, Rupert, Kimberly and Jackpot, Nev.

Armed with guns, the boys burglarized about 10 homes and three cars - including two police cars in Rupert and Jerome.

In one case, police say, a 16-year-old shot at a man who saw the boys breaking into his neighbor’s home in Twin Falls. He had stopped to find out what was going on when the boy fired a round from a stolen police shotgun.

“The only thing that saved the neighbor was when the subject made a dirty remark before shooting,” Gauthier said. “The neighbor spun around and stepped away before the subject fired. The shot hit the neighbor’s pickup.”

In another instance, the renegade teens even drove past a police car that was responding to one of the burglaries.

They parked a short distance away and watched as police searched the house, said Jerome County Detective Dan Chatterton.

The boys confessed to stealing up to $150,000 in property, but in their whirlwind escapade, they couldn’t remember everything, he said.

Police say the boys stole 12 cars. When one would break down, they abandoned it.

Wednesday - the day they were arrested - they discarded a Chevy Blazer, Gauthier said. They had scooped up two guns each and hunted for another car.

In the end, there were 30 police cars trailing three of the boys - two in a van and one in a Ford Bronco.

Police from eight agencies cornered the van in Twin Falls and arrested two 16-year-olds Wednesday night. A third 16-year-old was arrested at his aunt’s house in Filer.

The fourth boy, 15, was arrested in Twin Falls at his mother’s house, where police found more than $5,000 in stolen property, Gauthier said.

© Copyright 1995 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


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