Cops on the lookout for TV snatchers

Thieves throw rocks through business’ windows to get to televisions
By: Roger Phelps, The Telegraph
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A rash of flat-screen TV thefts has plagued Folsom and authorities are asking citizens for help in cracking the cases. It is believed the same suspected thieves burgled three local stores in the space of 36 hours, with the last two TV thefts coming in broad daylight on a Sunday. In each case, a large river rock was discovered near broken store windows. “Investigators were able to obtain surveillance images of the suspects,” said Officer Michelle Beattie of the Folsom Police Department. “Suspect No. 1 is described as a white male adult, approximately 40 to 50 years old, thin build with brown hair. Suspect No. 2 is described as a light-skinned male adult, late 30s to 40s, thin build, receding hair line and a light goatee or beard.” Folsom resident Rima Sereen said in her four years here, Folsom seems to have become a less secure place. “I think a major factor is unemployment,” Sereen said. “Four years ago, a reason to live here is that Folsom was safe and secure. I feel sad about the way crime has been aggravated.” The surveillance tape is from an incident occurring in the 800 block of Iron Point Road at 9:56 a.m. on Feb. 1. “Both suspects were seen arriving at the business (and) looking through the windows,” Beattie said. Approximately five hours later, they returned to the business, smashing the front window and making off with a flat-screen television. They were seen driving a dark-colored, early to mid-1990s Dodge Dakota extended-cab pickup truck. An earlier incident with a similar method of operation was reported in the100 block of Iron Point Road at 1:19 a.m. Jan 30. A third theft was reported at 10:50 a.m. Feb. 1, less than an hour after the recording of the surveillance tape from the Iron Point Road incident, in the 500 block of Plaza Drive. In each case, large-screen TVs were stolen. Folsom resident Dan Winkelman, a retired peace officer with the California state parks system, said he believed the cases will be tough to solve. “It’s very difficult to enforce, and it’s very difficult to track the stolen property,” Winkelman said. “The Police Department has higher-priority contacts that they are dispatched to.” Persons with information that might help police are urged to call Det. Rick Olson at 351-3323.