Local News

Two juveniles arrested for break-ins

A rash of vehicle break-ins in Thayer, Jefferson and Nuckolls counties got a break Jan. 26 as the Fairbury Police Department zeroed in on two males, ages 15 and 17, whom they believe responsible for the break-ins and thefts, which took place Jan. 22-25, according to reports.
The 17-year-old came across the radar first as he was observed by the police walking in a Fairbury alley close to midnight Jan. 26.
The male ran as police tried to make contact and at that point, the police asked the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department for assistance. Law enforcement tracked the male to the Pinecrest Apartments in Fairbury. Officers saw the male getting into a car with other people. Police eventually arrested him and according to a press release from Fairbury police, they concluded he was involved in the break-ins in multiple jurisdictions. Police were also able to recover some of the stolen items that had been reported.
The next morning, shortly before noon, police arrested the 15-year-old at Fairbury High School. He was released to his parents while the older male was lodged in the Lancaster County Juvenile Detention Center.
Fairbury Police are working on the case with sheriff departments in Thayer and Nuckolls counties. More arrests may be made in connection with the case.
“We are hoping to make one to two more arrests,” Fairbury Police Chief Chad Sprunk said Jan. 28. “We need to coordinate with other agencies for these arrests. If they’re charged in all three counties, each vehicle they broke into was a separate offense, so a minimum of 25 break-ins for each person in Fairbury.”  
Sprunk said Fairbury had 25 break-ins and Deshler had 20. Nuckolls County Sheriff Brad Baker may be reached for break-ins in Ruskin.
Thayer County Sheriff David Lee said approximately 20 vehicles were broken into in the Hebron area and ransacked.
“It appears the person responsible was looking for cash and change. They left a lot of valuable things behind,” Lee said. The sheriff’s office warned residents not to leave valuables in their vehicles via its Facebook page.
“This person could have made it a lot worse by leaving with credit cards or social security cards,” Lee said.
The majority of the vehicles were broken into Jan. 22. No vandalism was reported and not every vehicle had a loss, Lee said.
Lee was instrumental in helping Fairbury develop a MO, which is the abbreviation for a Latin phrase used to define the mode of operation of a person of interest.
“We had an idea of who the suspect might be,” Lee said. The sheriff’s office also thought others were involved.  
He said not locking vehicles is a problem and he didn’t form that judgement based on this incident alone.
“You really should lock your vehicles and keep important items out of the vehicles if they are unattended,” he said.
Lee said he has seen open windows on vehicles in downtown Hebron with cash in plain sight.

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