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Police Blotter

Mid Year Burglary Report from BCU

August 22, 2018 9:12 AM

Central District Burglary Crime Unit (BCU) 2018 Mid-Year Update


Detective Jokala became the Central District BCU liaison on 1/28/18. Below is her mid-year report.  Det. Jokala--along with her BCU colleagues and various central officers--did an outstanding job investigating and arresting a number of serial offenders who were responsible for dozens of burglaries and thefts in the downtown.  The use of specialized teams--like the BCU and VCU (Violent Crime Unit)--provide a great service to the Central District and demonstrate the old adage that the whole (team) is greater than the sum of the parts.

                                    Captain Freedman



Det. Tracie Jokala, August 2018:


I have worked approximately 67 cases that include burglary and theft/auto theft/CDTP as they relate to a burglary. These cases are those with potential or solid suspect information that can actively be worked. Cases that have no known active leads result in a formal contact by an intern or volunteer, and a Victim Contact Form is completed. Sometimes these forms, which solicit the victim for any additional information, result in lead development –at which point a Detective may follow up.


As is with any BCU District Liaison, I remain available for contact or concerns by community members or groups that which contact. Besides investigating cases, the BCU has spoken to community groups regarding crime stats, prevention tips, and current burglary trends. With serial offenders, we have also leafleted neighborhoods.


One burglary may spawn six thefts from auto, but if victims report separately, officers may categorize each investigation as a burglary. Further, several serial offenders who were very active during July were taken into custody. In addition, some gang members are believed to be in the downtown area committing burglaries.


Significant 2018 Cases


18-34040 – Burnie's Rock Shop - 901 E Johnson St. The early morning of 1/28/18, Burnie's Rock Shop was the victim of a smash and grab style burglary that resulted in the loss of at least 10K in jewelry and thousands of dollars in property damage. Blood was left on scene and a tip resulted in an arrest; six months later, the suspect summoned investigators to the jail to confess to where he stashed the loot and it was recovered. The suspect is still in custody awaiting revocation on his probation.


18-37978 18-39138 18-45887 18-48479 18-55522 – Findorff Construction Site 821 E Washington. During late January early February of this year the Findorff construction site at this location suffered a series of significant copper theft/burglaries that occurred several times a week.  After a number of steps were taken to safeguard the site, the suspect was eventually caught by MPD.  The suspect later pled and was sentenced to 4 years state prison with 5 years of extended supervision.


Twenty Case Numbers –Theft/ID Theft/Burglary cases. During Jan-Mar of 2018, a serial thief and burglar was very active; his M.O. was mainly to steal purses and wallets from anywhere he could gain entry and then run up credit cards in short order. He was extremely active. The suspect eluded MPD on 3/3/18 but left behind a vehicle which resulted in the recovery of 22 purses and wallets and a multitude of other stolen items and fruits of his crimes. Ultimately, by pure luck, the suspect walked out of Metcalfes on Midvale right in front of my squad as I was canvassing the area with flyers about his crimes and was taken into custody.


The suspect is still in custody has been charged in this case with almost 30 felonies. He recently waived his revocation. He did have some accomplices who have also been identified and arrested.


18-108027, 18-101158, 18-157363, 18-157539, 18-279590 Auto theft/burglary/ID Theft – Multiple addresses. A single suspect was behind a number of cases that occurred downtown this spring and early summer. His identity only surfaced based on an anonymous tip. The suspect has a significant and diverse criminal history and is brazen in his crimes. He does not conceal his identity. He is linked to three auto thefts, one resulting in a charge. For this particular case he lived out of a stolen Subaru for 4 months (in Janesville). At his arrest, he had a full set of Madison Property Management master keys in his possession. They have no idea how he obtained them. He is still in custody and has multiple cases pending. He was also burglarizing underground garages during July and it is unknown how many he is responsible for due to lack of evidence/footage.


18-292038, 18-902948, 18-281954, 18-276401, 18-271962, 18-279036 – Multiple locations, mostly apartment building parking structures. This suspect is linked to at least the 6 aforementioned cases, all of which were charged. He is a possible suspect in at least 10 others, however lack of video footage presents significant obstacles in the cases. The suspect's M.O. is to burglarize apartment building parking areas and break into autos and steal whatever he can find. BCU leafleted his favorite area and in one of the cases he is later seen on camera tearing down the flyers inside the lobby. The suspect was eventually taken into custody by Central CPT, holed up in a room in 16 N Bassett. City camera work showed individuals coming and going from the address, at one point loading bags in to a Mercedes SUV with out of state plates. DA's office is reviewing the cases and none are in CCAP as of this report. He remains in custody on several warrants.



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