By Joel Phelps
With the help of a Pine Street business owner’s surveillance cameras and a keen eye of another resident, the Arkadelphia Police Department was able to solve an October case of vehicle breaking-and-enterings.
Court documents filed this week indicate that 39-year-old William Michael Lewis, of 930 McHenry St., Malvern, was responsible for pilfering through vehicles and stashing items in an open storage unit.
On Oct. 5, officers responded to the 1200 block of Haddock Street, where a resident reported having a run-in with the person he suspected had just broken into his vehicle. A neighbor reportedly watched as someone pilfered through the vehicle and took a canopy, numerous articles of paper and a bottle of hand sanitizer.
The complainant told police he approached a man attempting to hide behind a bush on 13th Street; the man fled westbound on foot, then the complainant found items missing from his vehicle stashed in an open storage unit at 1318 Pine St.
As police conducted a search for the suspect, James Rollins, owner of Arkadelphia Tire and Outfitters, reported a trespasser at his business. An affidavit notes he’d viewed surveillance video and observed a man who’d been dropped off in the parking lot peering into parked vehicles.
As the police search continued, a resident of the 2000 block of Pine Street advised he had just chased a white male from his backyard toward a wooded area adjacent to Ellison Place Apartments, on North 20th Street.
Police later got a tip that the suspect was at Domino’s. They responded to the pizza chain and took Lewis into custody. Lewis reportedly admitted to the accusations during police questioning, according to the affidavit.
Lewis is being charged with breaking or entering.