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Section A: General News


Cops probe burglaries, thefts




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Wilson County News
August 22, 2012 | 1,193 views | Post a comment

Like large cockroaches, scorpions, and grasshoppers, it seems as though burglars and thieves also are more prevalent during the summer in Wilson County. Area law-enforcement personnel have been busy recovering property and rounding up suspects.

The Wilson County Sheriff’s Office is asking for the public’s help in locating Louis “Spider” Lerma, 37, of Stockdale, the subject of an arrest warrant charging him with one count of burglary of a habitation, said sheriff’s Investigator Roland Treviño. The warrant was issued after evidence collected at the scene of a July 29 burglary of a home on C.R. 305 east of Floresville indicated that Lerma was the perpetrator.

Treviño said sheriff’s Deputy Travis Beck responded to the home at approximately 12:14 p.m. after a resident discovered that someone had broken a side window, entered the home, and stolen items, including a TV, DVD player, and a jewelry box.

Lerma is described as a Hispanic male standing 5 feet, 3 inches tall, and weighing 150 pounds. He has black hair and brown eyes. Anyone with information about his whereabouts is asked to call the Wilson County Sheriff’s Office at 830-393-2535 or Crime Stoppers of Wilson County at 830-393-INFO (4636).

Deputies have, however, made arrests in other recent cases, including:

•Gary Lanford, 34, currently being held in the Atascosa County jail on an unrelated theft charge, is charged with theft of property worth more than $1,500 but less than $20,000, for allegedly stealing approximately 1,000 gallons of off-road diesel fuel from a farm on S.H. 97 West outside Floresville March 24.

•Phillip Ward, 25, of Seguin was arrested June 21 and charged with two counts of theft of property worth more than $1,500 but less than $20,000 after allegedly stealing a swing arm, pulleys, gear motors, and weights from a pump jack at an oil lease on C.R. 332 June 15 and selling them to a scrap metal dealer.

•Angel Rene Sanchez, 18, of Floresville was arrested Aug. 8 and charged with six counts of theft of property worth more than $1,500 but less than $20,000, after he allegedly was caught attempting to sell a junk vehicle parked on a property on C.R. 168. Treviño said Sanchez allegedly perpetrated similar schemes involving at least five other vehicles.

Deputies have recovered a 1969 Chevrolet Impala and a 1982 Ford F-150 pickup truck in connection with the Sanchez case. They continue to search for a 1989 Toyota Corolla, a 1987 Chevrolet van, a 1979 Chevrolet Camaro, and a 1949 Dodge pickup truck.

The La Vernia Police Department continues its investigation into a rash of vehicle burglaries that occurred July 16-17. Police Chief Bruce Ritchey says some items, including a GPS device, were recovered when officers from the San Antonio Police Department arrested Daniel Gamarra and Brandon Sprouse Aug. 8. Ritchey said the home address set in the unit by the GPS’ owner matches one of the crime scenes.

Among the four vehicles that were allegedly burgled, Ritchey said only one was locked. Another had its window smashed. The alleged thieves accessed the remaining two simply by opening the doors.

“Lock the door,” Ritchey warned car owners.

The chief reminds citizens that burglary often is a crime of opportunity. Therefore, he suggested not leaving valuables, such as purses or wallets, in locations where they can easily be seen from outside the vehicle. Ritchey also said to activate security alarms, if so equipped, and park in lit locations at night.
 

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