Luverne PD sees rash of burglaries
On Wednesday, Sept. 21, the Luverne Police Department experienced multiple crimes in the span of a just a few hours that ultimately coincided with an arrest made by the Opp Police Department.
“On Wednesday morning before 6 a.m., our night shift guys received a call from the 500 block of Jeffcoat Street. A gentleman there reported that his vehicle had been plundered through,” said Mason Adcock, LPD investigator.
“Officers went to the area and talked to the complainant. There was no forced entry to the vehicle, because he left it unlocked, and there were no items missing out of the vehicle.”
Adcock said shortly before 7 a.m. LPD received a call from the 100 block of Ridgecrest Drive. A woman then reported her vehicle missing, and officers responded to the area.
“Her vehicle was in fact missing, and we started the report on it. Shortly after starting the report on it, we received another call from a lady that lived on Jeffcoat Street saying her vehicle had been broken into during the night at some point, and that there was some jewelry missing and a small amount of change.”
At this time, officers began canvasing the area in search of physical evidence; LPD believed the occurrences to be connected.
“While canvasing the area, we were contacted by the Sanders family. There was a generator that had been moved out of the warehouse. We started canvasing their property at the corner of Jeffcoat and Third and found that their main business office had been broken into,” Adcock said.
No items were missing from the warehouse, but there were signs of entry into the main office building.
“There was a safe in the building. They had driven the pins out of the safe, but did not gain entry into the safe,” Adcock said.
Numerous battery-powered hand tools were also taken from the toolbox of a truck that was parked at the building.
“While working on this, we received another complaint from the area of the 100-200 bock of Ridgecrest Drive, saying someone had attempted to enter their garage. Nothing was missing from there,” Adcock said.
According to Adcock, the stolen vehicle from earlier in the day had been entered into the National Crime Information Center (NCIC). Opp Police Department made contact with that vehicle between at approximately 11:10 a.m.
According to a report by OPD, B Shift units responded to the Kountry Kitchen on West Cummings Avenue in reference to a suspicious person. Officers made contact with and detained for investigation Jimmy Tidwell, a 32 year of age male resident of Pensacola, Florida.
Subsequent investigation by B Shift officers and OPD investigators determined that the 2011 Buick that Tidwell was operating was stolen from Luverne, Alabama within the last 12 hours.
Officers also located a ring, a laptop computer and a Samsung Tablet, all of which appeared to be stolen property.
Tidwell will be charged with receiving stolen property by the City of Opp. Charges are pending in Crenshaw County.
“The laptop and tablet were identified by the lady on Ridgecrest as being hers. She did not realize they had been stolen at the time she reported the car,” Adcock said.
“They were inside the residence, so he had made entry into the residence, got in and went out to get in the vehicle. Tidwell did, in fact, admit to taking the car, laptop and tablet.”
LPD has obtained warrants for the theft of the car, according to Adcock.
In another part of town only an hour later, a break-in occurred at Fred’s.
“Shortly after 12 a.m. Wednesday morning, one black male forcefully entered Fred’s on South Forest Ave.,” Adcock said.
“The subject threw a cinderblock through the front door, and then entered. He moved through the store to the area behind the first cash register where the cigarettes were stored, got approximately 10 cartons of cigarettes and exited back through the door he came in.”
Adcock says as of now the only identification they have on the suspect is that he was thin and under the height of six feet tall. The subject is also believed to have dreadlocks.
The next morning, another burglary occurred that was believed to be in connection with the previous day.
“Thursday afternoon, Mr. Slay at the pawn shop called and reported that one of their vehicles they had for sale out front had been broken in to and damaged,” Adcock said.
“Officers made a report and were able to obtain video footage of someone entering the vehicle. Right now we have reason to believe that all of the cases in that area are connected.”
LPD is currently seeking a second suspect. It is believed that a red, 90’s model extended cab Ford Ranger driven and owned by a white male was also involved in these crimes.
“We have recovered a significant amount of stolen property in relation to these burglaries and thefts, but there is still property we’re looking for. So, we need help,” Adcock said.
Anyone with information is asked to call LPD at (334) 335-3334.