Crime spree halted?

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By Patrick Yost editor

Madison Police Department investigators believe a more than five month burglary and auto entry spree ended last week with the arrest of two Madison men on dozens of theft charges. According to Det. Scott Pitocchelli, Madison Police Department, Madison Police Officers Cody Morris and Andy Koth arrested Roydrekkious Smith, 22, on Saturday, June 14 at the Cracker Barrel restaurant after Smith had attempted to sell back a smart phone he had allegedly stolen from a woman’s car the previous night. The victim, Pitocchelli said, called her cell phone and Smith answered and attempted to sell the device back for $150. Officers arranged a meeting with Smith and arrested him on site at the restaurant and recovered the phone. Smith’s arrest also led to the Wednesday, June 18 arrest of Erikk Wilson, 25, Madison. According to Lt. Colin Campbell, Madison Police Department, both men face more than a dozen felony charges including entering auto, burglary and theft by receiving.

Campbell said investigators continue to work leads in the case since the arrests and have also included a 15-year-old male that they will file juvenile complaints against. Campbell said Smith and Wilson are alleged opportunistic criminals. During interviews following the arrest both men reportedly told officers that they only took items from vehicles that were not locked. Campbell said the complaints cover the breadth of the city of Madison, from incidents in the parking lot of Morgan Memorial Hospital to the Saye Creek subdivision. More than $2,000 worth of items have been recovered, primarily electronics, bicycles and a compound bow. Campbell said Smith and Wilson would walk the town checking vehicles to see if they were locked or not.

Investigators believe the pair and the juvenile may have entered more than 30 cars but “they checked more than 100,” he said. He also said the pair are facing burglary charges for two residential burglaries including the burglary of a garage at an East Washington Street residence where two bikes were stolen.

Both bikes were recovered and one man was charged with theft by receiving stolen property. ”We believe they are probably responsible for more but we haven’t tied them to them yet,” said Pit Det. Wes Thompson said the arrests don’t clear all of the burglaries and entering auto complaints in Madison since January but would affect “95 percent” of those complaints. “We hope and we are confident that this was the theft ring,” said Pitocchelli. He also said that officers and investigators are continuing to track down stolen items and determine if persons purchased or otherwise acquired the items from Smith and Wilson. If so, Pitocchelli said, more arrests will follow.

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