Warren charged in 2 home invasions

Published 6:25 pm Friday, November 17, 2017

A handful of Greenville Police Department officers received some unexpected early-morning cardio as authorities thwarted a pair of home invasions, culminating in the arrest of one man.

Fernandez Warren, 30, was charged with first-degree burglary, second-degree assault, third-degree burglary and attempting to elude after breaking into an occupied North Perry Street apartment, assaulting the occupant and fleeing to a second unoccupied home on South Perry Street.

Fernandez Warren

Greenville Police Department chief Justin Lovvorn said that curious neighbors, who heard a commotion next door, notified the department of a disturbance Thursday morning at approximately 5:30 a.m.

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According to Lovvorn, Warren originally knocked at the front door of the apartment, but eventually doubled around to an unlocked back door and walked into the victim’s home.

The apartment owner, a 63-year-old man who considered Warren an acquaintance at best, Lovvorn said, was accosted with his own walking cane after he refused to give Warren money.

The struggle soon moved into the kitchen, where Warren inflicted knife wounds to the victim’s hand and thumb.

It was then that the concerned neighbors attempted to check on the victim, causing Warren to flee.

“We had officers saturating the area in an attempt to locate him after we realized what had happened,” Lovvorn said. “A person stopped and told one of the officers and she said she saw an individual go into a residence on South Perry Street. 

“The officers went and checked that residence and found where he looked like someone had forced entry into that residence. They went in and found the offender hiding under a bed, and were able to get control of him and place him under custody.”

Lovvorn added that Warren’s erratic behavior throughout the incident led him to believe that he was under the influence of an unknown substance.

“To say which one would be pure speculation, but he did not appear to be acting normally,” Lovvorn said.

The victim was taken to the emergency room with cuts to his hand and leg, as well as a back injury.  None of the injuries was reported as life threatening, however.

“I’m very pleased with the officers’ response and quick apprehension of this possibly dangerous suspect who had already injured one victim,” Lovvorn said.

“I believe their actions helped prevent further injury to innocent civilians, and they very quickly and appropriately got him off the streets. And I commend the combined efforts of patrol and investigations.”

In addition to a few common-sense suggestions, including keeping one’s doors locked and being aware of one’s surroundings at all times, Lovvorn said that being a good Samaritan could potentially save lives.

“The neighbors could’ve assumed it was just a personal argument going on next door that was none of their business, but they decided to check on it and see,” he said. “They definitely caused him to have less injuries than what he could’ve received.

“It’s important for the community to look after and help each other, and get involved when they see something that is wrong or could cause someone harm. They don’t have to put themselves in harm’s way; it could be simply picking up the phone and letting us come and check it out.  It never hurts to let us check on something if you have a doubt in your mind. If you’re questioning whether you should call us, that should tell you that you need to call. Let us make the decision of whether it’s worth looking at.”

Warren is currently being held at the Butler County Jail. Bail was set at $51,000.