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A Spokane man who robbed a convenience store at gunpoint after avoiding prison time for a theft and burglary case is now headed to the big house.
Anthony D. Fuerte, 19, was sentenced to 6 1/2 years in prison and ordered to pay $99 in restitution - the proceeds of a robbery at the Zip Trip at 2020 W. Francis Ave., in January.
Police found Fuerte hiding in a carport just west of the store. They say he had an Airsoft gun with him, along with money stolen in the robbery.
Fuerte had been given drug treatment instead of prison for a felony theft and burglary case involving nearly $200,000 in stolen goods.
Fuerte also was arrested in December 2010 on suspicion of theft and harassment after a deputy followed his shoe prints through snowy woods.
Fuerte pleaded guilty to first-degree robbery Friday and was sentenced to 80 months in prison by Superior Court Judge Tari Eitzen.
Two customers at Shari's restaurant in northwest Spokane had their laptops stolen out of their hands Sunday, police say.
The women were sitting in a booth about 4:50 p.m. when a man walked up, slammed a MacBook shut and grabbed it from one of them, then grabbed the other laptop that was nearby.
The thief, identified by police as Tyler C. Berens, 20, ran from the restaurant but was arrested minutes later at the McDonald's across the street. A McDonald's employee told police Berens walked into the store on a cellphone and said “I'm going to jail” before locking himself in the bathroom, according to court documents.
Police found Berens in the bathroom and recovered the laptops from a garbage can. Officers said Berens had two Xanex pills on him, which earned him drug possession charges in addition to second-degree robbery and second-degree theft charges for the laptop heists.
Berens already has a trial scheduled in May for property crimes charges related to a counterfeit check ring.
Police on Friday arrested four men considered to be “well known burglars” responsible for crimes in Spokane Valley, officials said today.
A Spokane Valley night-shift patrol platoon led by Sgt. Don Manning focused on the area of 400 North University Road and the area of 13500 East Rich Road, which police say “have been notorious for criminal activity for some time.”
Arrested were Damian M. Plumley, 22, on warrants for three counts of second-degree theft and one count of first-degree trafficking in stolen property; Steven D.T. Devitt, 42, on a warrant for second-degree theft and vehicle prowling; Christopher Michael Stoddard, 20, on new charges of second-degree theft and first-degree trafficking in stolen property; and Mark William Bush, 37, on a Washington Department of Corrections warrant for failure to comply.
Bush (pictured) is a repeat offender who was targeted by Crime Stoppers in February even though he already was in DOC custody.
Police recovered a large amount of stolen property during the arrests Friday, which property crimes detectives identified and returned to their owners.
“The return of these items took longer than normal because none of the high value items had been reported stolen,” sheriff's spokesman Deputy Craig Chamberlin said in a news release. “When detectives asked the property owners why they did not report the thefts, the property owners said they had not gotten around to it.”
“Citizens are asked to report any type of theft, suspicious vehicles or persons to either 911 or Crime Check,” Chamberlin continued. “This information is extremely valuable and played a vital role with the multiple arrests made this weekend in Spokane Valley. The Sheriff's Office has devoted extra resources to focus on burglaries in unincorporated Spokane County and the City of Spokane Valley.”
1. An astonishingly high percentage of bike riders must be thieves.
2. A lot of people must be willing to buy bicycles or accessories from sources other than reputable bike shops — sources that may or may not have obtained the bikes or parts legally.
What else is there to conclude? If you talk to bike riders, you never stop hearing about stolen bicycles, ripped-off seats, et cetera.
Thieves stripped a near-empty north Spokane home of copper piping on Tuesday, according to the Spokane County Sheriff's Office.
A neighbor who watches the home in the area of 8700 N. Country Homes Blvd. said the home appeared normal when he left for work about 5 a.m., but when he returned about 4 p.m., the garage door would not open.
He saw several items piled on the floor. Sheriff's deputies say thieves forced their way into the home and tore copper piping from the laundry room and bathroom walls, as well as from a crawl space and from the basement ceiling. Dry wall was damaged extensively.
Another neighbor said he drove past the home about 7 a.m. and saw two men on opposite sides of the street wearing hoodies and carrying large garbage bags.
The man said he saw an older gray Ford van parked on Weipert Road that he'd never seen before. The first three digits of the license plate possibly were 730.
Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Check at (509) 456-2233.
A 21-year-old vehicle prowling suspect chased down by a Spokane County sheriff's deputy Tuesday night begged for leniency and said he had recently been released from prison, officials say.
Orlando Jaramillo, who was a Crime Stoppers fugitive just two months ago, told Deputy Robert Satake he was on probation and had been “doing good” but needed a cellphone, didn't have money and decided to steal a phone from a car in a North Division Street parking lot, according to a news release.
Satake was patrolling the area of Division and Cascade Way about 10 p.m. when he heard yelling about a robbery and saw a man chasing another man through the parking lot of Tire O Rama.
Satake turned into the Costco parking lot, exited his patrol car and ordered Jaramillo to stop, but the suspect continued running before Satake caught up with him and detained him.
The male victim said he and his friend were getting fuel and a soda at a gas station when Jaramillo asked for a cigarette, according to the sheriff's office. They told him no, and when they exited the store they found their cellphones missing and saw Jaramillo running across the street.
Jaramillo was booked into jail on charges of vehicle prowling, third-degree theft and obstructing. He was sentenced to 20 months in prison in December 2010 for second-degree robbery and attempted residential burglary.
Crime Stoppers was offering a reward for tips that led to his capture back in January when he was wanted for violating his Department of Corrections probation. He was arrested on a new residential burglary charge Jan. 30 but prosecutors have not yet filed charges.
Sports cards were recovered during a recent investigation into a burglary ring, and detectives are looking for their owners.
Detectives believe the cards were stolen in the last six months during residential burglaries in Spokane County.
Suspects Dustin J. Myhren, 26, and Donald G. Myhren, 30, were arrested Saturday after a detective reviewing burglary reports noticed that the description of suspects in a series of burglaries matched the brothers, and that a suspect vehicle was registered at their address, according to the Spokane County Sheriff's Office.
Burglary victims missing sports cards are asked to call the sheriff's Investigative Task Force at (509) 477-4778.
A property crime suspect sought for weeks by Crime Stoppers and Spokane police was arrested Friday after stealing an expensive ring from Fred Meyer, officers say.
Taylor Aleck Contos, 29, was a passenger in a black truck matching the description of the vehicle used in he theft when sheriff's deputies stopped it on Highway 395.
An employee at Fred Meyer at 12100 N. Division St., identified Contos as the man who was looking at rings and left with a Kathy Ireland 1 Karat white gold anniversary ring valued at nearly $4,000.
Deputies recovered the ring from Contos' right shoe after he confessed to stealing it, according to court documents.
Contos had been wanted on six felony property crime cases since he left the Pioneer Center East drug treatment center on Feb. 20.
He was to begin trial this month on charges related to alleged thefts at stores last summer, as well as methamphetamine, heroin and unlawful issuance of bank checks charges.
Now he's in jail on those charges and a new charge of second-degree theft.
Two brothers already facing trial for a burglary last year are suspected of a series of burglaries in Spokane and Stevens counties.
Dustin J. Myhren, 26, and Donald G. Myhren, 30, were arrested Saturday after a detective reviewing burglary reports noticed that the description of suspects in a series of Spokane County burglaries matched the brothers, and that a suspect vehicle was registered at their address, according to the Spokane County Sheriff's Office.
Detectives began following the brothers and noted as they drove slowly through residential neighborhoods and even knocked on a door to see if anyone was home.
The brothers are believed to have burglarized a home on 51st Street of about $15,000 in jewelry March 26.
Detectives tried to contact them during a traffic stop Saturday near North Perry Street and Half Moon Road. The men fled on foot but were quickly arrested. Katrina Soto, 24, also was arrested.
Detectives say Donald Myhren admitted to being part of a burglary ring with his brother involving seven or eight people.
He also knew of another burglary March 26 in which a homeowner was threatened with a gun, according to the sheriff's office.
In addition to the brothers' upcoming burglary trial, Dustin Myhren also is facing a felony drug charge for an arrest in February. He also was just sentenced to two years probation after pleading guilty to a drug felony in Superior Court.
A teenage burglary suspect arrested for another alleged burglary just hours after he left jail is now charged in a third case.
Reshawn S. Zinnerman, 18, is accused of burglarizing a home in he 1600 block of North Napa Street Feb. 8.
Police say he stole a digital camera, iPod, camcorder and jewelry, then sold them at a pawn shop.
Jyreel D. Brandom (pictured), 18, and Andrea R. Gallardo, 26, are charged with trafficking in stolen property for allegedly helping Zinneman sell the items.
Police say Zinnerman admitted to the burglary and several others after he was arrested Feb. 29. Zinnerman described his back-to-back arrests as a “learning experience” in an interview with The Spokesmen-Review. He remains in jail.
Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for tips that led to Brandom's arrest.
Police consider him a repeat offender; he pleaded guilty to to felony second-degree theft and resisting arrest in January and was credited for three days spent in jail. He also has two juvenile felony convictions for theft.
Brandom, 5-feet tall and 160 pounds, is a transient.
Anyone with information on his current location is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS or submit tips online. Tipsters do not have to leave their name to collect a reward but should leave a code name or number.
Crime Stoppers is targeting a couple accused of stealing more than $40,000 in guns, jewelry and electronics from the wife's mother.
Tiffany N. Russell, alias Thompson, and Kevin C. Russell, both 34, are accused of burglarizing her mother's storage unit at 11018 E. Sprague Ave. and her apartment at 6010 E. Sixth Ave. while her mother was out of town.
Her mother let her stay at her home periodically since she was released from prison about two years ago, according to court documents prepared by the Spokane County Sheriff's Office.
She said only her daughter and her daughter's husband knew where the stolen firearms, including a sniper rifle, were located, and knew of the jewelry and electronics that turned up missing from the home. The woman learned her daughter sold some of the items at a Spokane Valley pawn shop. She also found surveillance video at the storage center showing her daughter loading items into her car.
Kevin Russell is charged with second-degree burglary and nine counts of theft of a firearm. Tiffany Russell is charged with second-degree burglary, first-degree theft, three counts of trafficking in stolen property in the first degree and nine counts of theft of a firearm. Prosecutors charged the couple March 23.
Kevin Russell, 6-foot-3 and 185 pounds, last gave an address on East 32nd Avenue in Spokane Valley.
Tiffany Russell, 5-foot-8 and 160 pounds, last listed her mother's apartment in Spokane Valley - one of the crime scenes - as her address.
Anyone with information on their current locations is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS or submit tips online.
A Spokane County health care employee accused of stealing money from a 79-year-old woman was released from jail today after appearing in court on 109 felony charges.
Deanna M. Purser, 50, was arrested Wednesday after a sheriff's investigation alleged she'd been making unauthorized purchases and taking unauthorized cash back while grocery shopping for the woman.
Detectives believe Purser, employed by ResCare, also used the woman's money to purchase personal groceries, cigarettes, Christmas presents for her children and a subscription to Sports Illustrated for her husband. She'd been caring for the woman part time after the woman suffered a stroke.
Spokane County sheriff's Detective Tamie Spitzer determined Purser took $31,762 in cash back at Albertsons from 2009 to 2011. She also determined $33,141 in groceries had been purchased, but the victim's average grocery bill should have been just $300 per month.
Prosecutors have not yet formally charged Purser.
She does not appear to have a criminal record, so even if she's convicted of 109 felonies, she'll face only about 22 to 29 months in prison. One or two theft convictions carries only a couple months in jail.
Theft and burglary victims in the Kootenai County area should check out photos of suspected stolen property seized by police recently.
Post Falls police released photos of the items Thursday in hopes the owners will come forward. View all the photos here.
Police seized the items while serving a search warrant recently with the Kootenai County Sheriff's Department.
Anyone who believes the property may be theirs is asked to call Detective John Mason at (208) 773-3517.
A Spokane County home health care employee is accused of stealing money from a 79-year-old woman she'd cared for since 2003.
Deanna M. Purser, 50, was arrested today after a lengthy investigation by Spokane County sheriff's Detective Tamie Spitzer alleged she'd been making unauthorized purchases and taking unauthorized cash back while grocery shopping for the woman.
The victim's daughter contacted the sheriff's office after she noticed an abnormally large amount of money spent at the Albertsons grocery store in Liberty Lake. She'd become suspicious when she noticed her mother's bank statements were lower than usual while preparing her taxes, according to the sheriff's office.
Spitzer determined Purser took $31,762 in cash back from 2009 to 2011. She also determined $33,141 in groceries had been purchased, but the victim's average grocery bill should have been just $300 per month.
Purser was booked into the Spokane County Jail today on seven counts of first-degree theft, 51 counts of unlawful possession of a payment instrument and 51 counts of second-degree theft.
Authorities are warning of a a young man on the South Hill who's scamming residents out of money by selling fraudulent magazine subscriptions.
A resident reported to Crime Check Monday that a 17- to 18-year-old boy came to her home on Friday and said he was selling magazines to benefit the Ferris High School soccer team, the Spokane County Sheriff's Office said Tuesday.
She gave the man a $55 check “happy to support her local high school” and was told the company selling the subscriptions was Blue Diamond Subscriptions, which is based in Arizona, according to the sheriff's office.
She learned on Monday that Ferris High is not involved in the fundraiser. Sheriff's officials contacted the Better Business Bureau and learned of a complaint to the Phoenix office about the company. They have yet to be able to contact the company.
The business is not registered in Washington.
Anyone who contacts someone who claims to be from the company is asked to call Crime Check at (509) 456-2233 and the BBB at (509) 455-4200.
An Arizona man who helped a North Idaho woman commit bank fraud has pleaded guilty.
Charles Earl Baker, 32, faces up to 30 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and five years of probation when he's sentenced June 19 in U.S. District Court in Coeru d'Alene.
Baker pleaded guilty today to conspiracy to commit bank fraud for a scheme involving Michelle Ann Mason, who pleaded guilty earlier this month.
Baker met Mason in late 2010 and opened a bank account that he used to deposit counterfeit, altered or forged checks that had been stolen from mail.
Baker then withdrew the cash using ATMs. Mason admitted to organizing Baker and at least five others to steal mail in the Oldtown, Idaho, area. Mason is to be sentenced June 18.
The case was investigated by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Pend Oreille County Sheriff's Office, Kootenai County Sheriff's Department, Bonner County Sheriff's Office, and the U.S. Secret Service.
A man's home was burglarized of about $15,000 jewelry after he left for about five hours Monday, according to the Spokane County Sheriff's Office.
Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for tips that solve the burglary, which occurred near the 7500 block of West 51st Street. A woman's ring worth about $5,000 and about $10,000 in other jewelry were stolen.
Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS or submit tips online. Tipsters do not have to leave their name to collect a reward but should leave a code name or number.
A Spokane man who embezzled more than $350,000 from a Coeur d'Alene insurance company has pleaded guilty to three federal felonies.
James K. Sokolis, 56, faces up to 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and three years of probation when he's sentenced June 12 by Judge B. Lynn Winmill in U.S. District Court in Coeur d'Alene.
Sokolis pleaded guilty Wednesday to three counts of insurance fraud. Sokolis was an insurance agent who previously owned and operated Rockwood Insurance in Coeur d'Alene.
He sold his share of the business in August 2010 and was hired to work for the new company. He was fired after admitting to misusing client money. Sokolis misappropriated $356,629.46, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.
Spokane police are asking for help finding a prolific property crime suspect wanted on six felony cases.
Taylor Aleck Contos, 29, left the Pioneer Center East drug treatment center on Feb. 20 and has not been located since, according to court documents. A no-bail warrant seeks his immediate arrest.
Contos was to begin trial this month on charges related to alleged thefts at stores last summer, as well as methamphetamine, heroin and unlawful issuance of bank checks charges.
A co-defendant, Kristofer J. Stairs, 29, pleaded guilty in December and was sentenced to six months in jail with credit for 131 days served. He was arrested on a new felony drug charge Monday.
Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for tips that help arrest Contos, who is 5-foot-9 and 190 pounds and last gave an address in the 1500 block of South Lincoln Street in Spokane.
Anyone with information his current location is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS or submit tips online.
A man suspected of burglarizing a north Spokane County home of a shotgun and a video game system turned himself in after being confronted by a detective Wednesday.
Kory M. Roberts, 23, is suspected of stealing the gun and X-Box 360 from a home in the 31300 block of North Staghorn Road on Tuesday, then selling them at a Spokane pawn shop.
The victim located the items at the pawn shop and contacted police. Roberts provided the shop his contact information when he sold the goods, according to the Spokane County Sheriff's Office.
Spokane County sheriff's Detective Tamie Spitzer called Roberts on Wednesday and gave him two options: turn himself for the burglary or have a warrant issued for his arrest.
Roberts turned himself in at the Public Safety Building “within a couple hours,” according to a news release by sheriff's spokesman Deputy Craig Chamberlin.
Roberts told Spitzer “he had a prescription medication addiction and his criminal activity fed his addiction,” Chamberlin wrote.
Roberts was booked into jail about 1:20 p.m. Wednesday on two counts of first-degree trafficking in stolen property.
A Spokane woman is accused of stealing nearly $30,000 from the Coeur d'Alene Tribal Housing Authority.
Debora J. Zimmerman, 46, was indicted Tuesday by a federal grand jury for embezzlement from an Indian tribal organization, the U.S. Attorney's Office announced Wednesday.
An arraignment date has not been set.
The indictment alleges Zimmerman stole more $28,000 from the housing authority between September 2008 and September 2010.
If convicted, Zimmerman faces up to five years in prison, a maximum fine of $250,000, and not more than three years of probation. The case was investigated by the FBI.
Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for tips that help solve a south Spokane County residential burglary in which about $20,000 in items was stolen.
A homeowner reported electronics, firearms, bank cards and jewelry among items stolen from the home in the area of the 8000 block of Highway 195 between noon and 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, according to the Spokane County Sheriff's Office.
Anyone with information on the burglary is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS or submit tips online.
A homeowner interrupted a burglary Wednesday afternoon and provided such a thorough description of the man that police were able to arrest a suspect about an hour later
The victim was at his home in the 1700 block of East Illinois Avenue about 2 p.m. when he heard someone trying to get in the front door. He chased the would-be burglary away and provided not only a through description of him to officers but also the license plate number of the car in which he fled, according to the Spokane Police Department.
Officer Ken Applewhaite spotted the car about an hour alter and contacted the driver, Robert Monreal Hoguin, 40, who matched the description of the culprit. The homeowner identified Hoguin as the man who tried to break into his home.
Police say they found heroin in Hoguin's coat. He was booked into jail on charges of attempted residential burglary and possession of a controlled substance.
Hoguin was arrested for car theft Feb. 3, but he was released when prosecutors did not file charges within 72 hours, according to court records.
More than $14,000 in merchandise was stolen from a Spokane Valley video game store late Monday or early Tuesday.
The owner of Game On in the 11800 block of East 1st Avenue told police the store was burglarized overnight and eight X-box gaming systems were stolen, along with eight X-Box wireless controllers, eight X-Box wired controllers, 150 X-Box games, two external hard drives, a wireless computer router, a Toshiba laptop computer, 100 Blu-ray movies and $200 in cash, according to the Spokane Valley Police Department.
Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for tips that lead to an arrest. Anyone with information is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS or submit tips online. Tipsters do not have to give their names.
A burglary suspect accused of stealing a truck and gun from a northwest Spokane home is a repeat offender with a 19-year history of property crimes, police say.
Grant Douglas Brough, 35, was one of two men who ran from a traffic stop near East Sanson Avenue and North Mayfair Street late Tuesday, according to Spokane police. Police dog Leonidas tracked Brough to a garage in the 100 block of East Everett Avenue.
A 45-year-old Spokane man was arrested last week after deputies responded to a suspicious vehicle at a north Spokane construction company.
Theodore Francis Gilman was booked into jail Thursday on second-degree burglary and theft of a motor vehicle charges after deputies found him driving a white truck with no headlights on a fenced commercial property belonging to Lance Pounder Excavation, according to the Spokane County Sheriff's Office. The truck also belonged to the company.
Deputies first responded to the neighboring IBEX Construction at 8015 N. Regal St. and spotted a hole cut in a fence and several gas cans gathered next to it. A woman sleeping in a vehicle nearby was detained and later released.
Gilman was released from jail when charges weren't filed with 72 hours, but he returned to jail Sunday on new charges of resisting arrest and taking a motor vehicle without permission. A woman he was on a date with in Airway Heights accused him of steaing her car and almost running over her foot.
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Police in Salt Lake City are trying to find a thief with a discriminating palate who broke into a deli and stole its finest meats and cheeses.
Caputo's owner Troy Petersen says five or six legs of prosciutto, artisan salami and the fanciest imported cheeses were gone when the burglary was discovered Monday morning. The less expensive cuts of meat were untouched.
Petersen says the lock to a walk-in cooler that's accessible from outdoors was broken, and about $2,400 worth of food was gone. He tells the Deseret News (http://bit.ly/AApiCA ) that replacing the gourmet products will take weeks because many come from distributors in southern Europe.
Petersen says the thief will have a tough time selling some of the products, because special cutting tools are required to process them.
LANCASTER, Pa. (AP) — Police say a teen fraudster's cunning credit card plot was foiled by a Pennsylvania convenience store clerk who noticed her own mother's name on the card.
Manor Township police say the clerk also recognized the teen as a former classmate when he tried to use the card to buy gas early Tuesday morning.
Authorities say 19-year-old Joshua Devonshire fled but was spotted later apparently trying to put the stolen card back in the clerk's mother's car. He was eventually taken into custody after being spotted sleeping in a car in the same development.
Investigators say they recovered several items from the car that were suspected to be stolen.
Devonshire is being held on $3,000 bail. It wasn't immediately clear whether he had an attorney.
Authorities are again warning of the “grandparents scam” after a north Spokane County man wired nearly $20,000 to Peru.
The man said he received a call about 10 a.m. Tuesday from a man he thought was his grandson. The caller said he needed $2,400 to get out of jail and that if he wired the money to Lima, Peru, they would avoid a two-day waiting period, according to the Spokane County Sheriff's Office.
He did so, and the man called again saying the judge increased bail and he needed $6,250. She transferred that money, then transferred another $6,250 upon request.
The man called again Wednesday about 9:30 a.m. and asked for $4,800 to pay lawyer fees. The victim transferred the money, but he refused another request for money that afternoon and called the sheriff's office.
It turns out the man was not his grandson.
The sheriff's office released the phone numbers the man called from today as part of a warning to the public: 438-998-6142, 514-458-3080, 438-993-6948, 438-998-6142
Police are again looking for tips on the theft of Nook tablets from the Spokane Valley Barnes and Noble, this time for a break-in early March 5.
Officers responded to an alarm at the store, 15310 E. Indiana Ave., at 5:52 a.m. and found a tire iron on the ground next to the shattered window. They believe the burglary targeted the Nook kiosk because cash registers and other merchandise appeared to be untouched, according to the Spokane Valley Police Department.
Surveillance video released Tuesday shows the thief wearing possibly a heavy fleece jacket with a white North Face logo on he left front chest and on the back right shoulder.
He also wore what appears to be dark blue jeans and dark shoes with a bright red logo on the heel, as well as a tan baseball hat with a light green bill and a blue and black backpack.
Police also are looking for tips on possible suspects in the theft of Nook tablets from the same store March 4.
Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Check at (509) 456-2233.