An alleged burglar couldn’t pass up the opportunity to walk by an open door without having a look inside. The thief almost got away with stealing some cash from inside too, after narrowly avoiding being seen by a maintenance man who unknowingly let him into the home. But it was a home security camera within the residence that ended up being his undoing.
Wednesday afternoon about 1:50 p.m., officers with the LaGrange Police Department responded to the Tall Pines apartments Turner Street apartment in reference to a Burglary.
Officers arrived and spoke with the victim, who advised that someone entered her apartment between noon and 1 p.m. and stole several items.
The victim advised that about $30 in loose change had been stolen from a plastic bottle stored in her kitchen. About 15 packs of Swisher Cigarillo wraps were also stolen from near where the loose change had been kept.
The victim told police that her apartment should have been locked at the time, but a maintenance employee had entered the residence to complete a work order. She explained that she was certain the maintenance employee had not taken anything and advised that she had a surveillance camera in the apartment that captured the incident.
Police then reviewed the security video, which showed the maintenance employee entering the apartment and leaving the door open. Seconds later an unknown black male walked by the door in the breeze way. The male then stuck his head into the apartment and began to look around. He then entered the apartment and proceeded to the kitchen area.
In the meantime, the maintenance employee then walked out of the apartment and closed the door behind him, apparently not noticing the thief.
The male suspect was then seen on video walking back and forth in front of the camera and to the window to see if it was clear for him to leave. The suspect looked through the peep hole in the door and once he saw the coast was clear, he fled the apartment.
The victim advised police that she didn’t know the name of the subject, but she stated he often walks around the complex and she recently gave him a cigarette outside of her apartment earlier.
Police then spoke with the maintenance employee, who stated he never saw the male enter the apartment and did not have any idea that someone else had come into the apartment.
The victim then met with police again as they were preparing to leave and informed them that she spoke with a neighbor and learned that the suspect’s name was “John John.”
Officers then checked police records and identified the suspect as Johnquavious Jamal Russell, who lives in a nearby apartment.
Russell was also determined to have an active felony warrant for his arrest, so police responded to his listed residence in order to make contact. Russell was then found within the residence and taken into custody for the Felony Probation warrant.
While picking up Russell, police gained consent to search the residence for the stolen property from another resident and officers located an empty Swisher Cigarillos pack in a rear bedroom that matched the items taken from the victim’s residence. Officers were unable to recover the missing loose coins.
As a result, Russell, age 23, was arrested and transported to the Troup County Sheriff’s Office where he was booked into the jail and charged with Burglary and Felony Probation Violation.
Russell is currently being held at the Troup County Jail where he was denied bond.
Tommy Murphy Staff Writer