Good police work and a community that got involved help catch an alleged car burglar this week.
The Clarksdale Police Department credits a sharp-eyed patrolman with initiating the investigation after he was flagged down by a resident who discovered someone has burglarized his car. As authorities converged on the scene an alerted the community, the situation ended with a homeowner holding the suspect at gunpoint until police arrived.
“We had an officer whotook the situation and responded correctly and a community that also responded and helped up make an arrest,” said Clarksdale Police Chief Sandra Williams. “It was good police work and it was a good community that assisted us when we needed their help.”
Williams said the incident began about 4:40 a.m. Tuesday when a resident on Pearson Street flagged down an officer on patrol and said he believed someone had broken into his car.
“It doesn’t appear that anything was missing from that car,” said Williams. “Our officer then called for backup and we converged on the scene and began finding what we believed were items taken from other auto burglaries on the ground in the same area,” said Williams. “We even found a car with a door open. That’s when our guys started canvasing the neighborhood.”
Williams said police looked at video survelliance camera in the neighborhood and determined a black male on a bike might be the culprit.
“Officers then spotted a man on a bike and a chase began,” said Williams. “The suspect ditched the bike and that prompted us to call the Coahoma County Sheriff Department and request their K9 unit.”
Williams also said police and sheriff’s deputies began calling people in the neighborhood they knew and said they were seeking someone and urged them to be on guard and call police if they spotted anything suspicious.
“We were then called to Viney Ridge by someone who said they had been alerted by their alarm and someone had been found hiding in their garage,” said Williams. “When our officer arrived on the scene the homeowner has the suspect at gunpoint and officers took the suspect into custody.”
Williams said a 17-year-old male is being held in connection with the incident. She said he is being treated as a juvenile, but police will be talking with the District Attorney about having him charged as an adult.
Williams said the chase crossed several neighborhoods and blue lights alerted many that something was going on.
“As the community woke up and found out what was going on they got involved and helped us,” said Williams. “People were calling us asking what was going on and how they could help.”
Williams said calls about an active burglary and suspects running through neighborhoods is a very top priority for Clarksdale Police and they responded in force.
Williams did not comment on the use of firearms in this situation, but did say she was glad it worked out the way it did.
“Like I said earlier, this was a great job by our officers, the Sheriff’s Department and the community,” said Williams. “I can’t tell you how important community involvement is in stopping crime.”
Williams said investigators spent most of Tuesday inventoring items believed stolen from cars and urged the community call police if they find something missing.
Williams said Tuesday the incident is still under investigation and police are trying to determine if other were involved.