May 26 06:23 PM

Neighbor helps solve B & E

February 24, 2010
BERLIN TWP. — Two 19 year-olds have been arrested on charges of home invasion.

Konstantino Siewert of Capac and Jacob Young of Washington Twp. allegedly broke into a Tubspring Rd. home on Feb. 15. A neighbor of the victim is credited with helping catch the thieves.

According to the St. Clair County Sheriff's Department, a resident in the 14000 block took note of a suspicious vehicle driving slowly through the neighborhood and, knowing of other area break-ins, she jotted down the license plate number. Once it was confirmed that a break-in had occurred, police were contacted.

An alert on the car's description was issued to law enforcement and a short time later, the pair was arrested in Capac by Chief Rich Zavislak. Items matching a description given by the victim were found in the vehicle.

Coincidentally, Zavislak said he first spotted the suspects on his way to work. They had turned from Koehn Rd. northbound onto Capac Road and were driving at a slow rate of speed when the chief came upon them, giving him time to take note of the car and license plate.

"I didn't know there was a 'b o l' on them until I got into the office," Zavislak said, referring to Central Dispatch's 'Be on the lookout' alert.

He immediately jumped into his cruiser, recalling that the car had turned onto Mill Street and a short time later, pulled them over.

"The arrest of the suspects in this case is the direct result of neighbors looking out for each other," Sheriff Tim Donnellon said.

"The lady had heard of break-ins in the area, took it upon herself to get the license plate number of the suspicious vehicle she saw in her neighborhood. She was able to get that information to the deputies and arrests were made. I commend her and all the other people in this county who are willing to assist us in stopping criminal acts."

According to Public Information Officer Deputy Steve Campau, there's no evidence yet that the pair might be responsible for other burglaries in the area, although the investigation is still ongoing.

The men were arraigned on Tuesday, Feb. 16 in district court on second degree home invasion charges. Siewert's bond was set at $1,500 and Young's was set at $1,000. The following day, Siewert posted his 10 percent deposit on the bond and was released from custody.

Just over a year ago, Siewert pleaded guilty to charges of larceny and third degree home invasion charges relating to a May 2008 incident in St. Clair County.

In December 2009, Berlin Township officials hosted a Neighborhood Watch workshop that encouraged residents to be aware of and report any suspicious behavior they might see in their neighborhoods.

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