Boys admit to entering 25-30 unlocked vehicles
Two 15-year-old boys admitted to entering numerous unlocked vehicles and stealing items in Clintonville last week, Clintonville Police Chief Terry Lorge said.
As of Monday, Oct. 19, residents have reported 14 thefts that occurred last week Wednesday night or early Thursday morning on the west side of town.
Eleven break-ins were reported between 3 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 15, and three additional ones were reported Friday, Oct. 16.
Items stolen include keys, purses, credit and debit cards and digital cameras. The boys discarded items they didn’t want along the way, Lorge said, so people may stumble upon items throughout the city.
“It’s unfortunate,” Lorge said, “and we also learned that they did this in the city of Shawano and the city of Appleton. We passed that information on to those departments as well.
“There will be multiple charges when we get this thing all sorted out,” Lorge said.
Every burglarized vehicle was unlocked in a driveway or on the street, Lorge said. He said he knows additional thefts have not been reported to police because the boys told police they entered 25 to 30 vehicles.
Lorge is calling on residents to report to police the additional 11 to 16 thefts. He said the police want each incident accounted for so the boys are charged properly, plus the police have evidence to return to residents.
“I don’t know if [residents are] just dismissing it as no big deal or whatever, but they’re not calling us,” Lorge said.
Lorge said the boys admitted to stealing from vehicles at a business in Clintonville’s industrial park this past summer as well, but without one report from the victims, it is hard for police to act on that information.
“We need people to lock their cars up. They can’t leave them sitting unlocked,” Lorge said.
The public is urged to call police when any neighborhood activity looks suspicious. Clintonville Police would rather check out a false alarm than miss a crime occurring, he said.
One success story Lorge shared was police obtained from the boys a digital camera that had all its files erased. Using file restoration software, a member of the police force recognized a man in the photo and returned his camera.
“That’s one of the joys of being in a small town. Everybody knows everybody,” Lorge said.
The man didn’t know the camera was stolen, Lorge said.