Prosecutors filed more felony charges against the Waupaca man found hiding in a bowling alley’s basement.
Brandon J. Bucher, 25, Waupaca, is charged with two counts of burglary, two counts of theft and one count of criminal damage to property.
Bucher is accused of stealing more than $6,000 in cash from Paca Pub in downtown Waupaca. He told police he spent it all to buy heroin, according to the criminal complaint.
On June 27, 2015, Waupaca Police Offcier Sam Van Dinter was dispatched to Paca Pub in response to a reported burglary.
Van Dinter spoke with an employee, who said she discovered money missing from the cash drawer that had been in the back office.
The bar’s owner, Mayor Brian Smith, told Van Dinter that $6,121 had also been stolen from an unlocked safe in the office.
No other cash or items were missing from the rest of the bar.
Van Dinter also found an 11-inch by 16-inch hole in the office ceiling. He went up into the crawl space above the ceiling, where he photographed a partial shoe impression in the dust on a board.
Security video of the bar the night before showed that nobody entered the bar after it was closed. The last people in the bar were the bartender, her boyfriend, identified as Bucher, and her cousin.
Shortly before midnight on Christmas Eve, 2015, Sgt. Mario Graceffa responded to a burglary complaint on the 1600 block of Royalton.
Graceffa met with the homeowners, who discovered when they returned home that two cans of change were missing from a hope chest in their bedroom, along with an old prescription bottle of hydrocodone and money from their son’s wallet. Although there was $200 in an envelope in a nearby dresser, that money had not been taken.
The victims of the Royalton Street burglary told police that they had been at Paca Pub with their daughter and her boyfriend, Bucher. They said Bucher left the bar that night for about an hour and a half, then returned.
On Jan. 12, Waupaca police arrested Bucher after they responded to an alarm at Nelson’s Strike Zone. They found him hiding in the basement.
The police also found footprints in the snow that had similar patterns to the print in the dust above the ceiling at Paca Pub.
On Jan. 14, Sgt. Brian Hoelzel interviewed Bucher at the Waupaca County jail.
Bucher said he had been at Paca Pub on June 26 of 27 with his girlfriend, who was tending bar. he said that he walked to the back of the bar around midnight, climbed onto the ice machine, into the ceiling and over to the office. He allegedly kicked in the ceiling, crawled onto a filing cabinet, then to the floor.
According to the criminal complaint, Bucher found two bank bags in the office, grabbed them, left the bar through the back door, went into an attic area above the apartment and hid the money in the insulation. He then walked back into the bar through the front door.
Bucher told Hoelzel that he retrieved the money the following day and purchased 6 grams of heroin for $1,500.
Bucher reportedly spent $250 a day for heroin until he ran out of money.
The complaint says Bucher went into a treatment facility and remained clean for awhile, but began using heroin again shortly after returning to Waupaca.