Neighbors helping neighbors.
Its something we talk about every day, but rarely do folks step up.
But this time someone in Port Wentworth did, and it helped put a burglary ring behind bars.
“Hes already at a disadvantage because of the situation he’s in, and now someone is taking advantage of him,”
Sgt Kenny McDonald/Port Wentworth Police
Sgt Kenny McDonald said a set of burglars took advantage of a man, forced to move from Barnwell Gardens mobile home park because of renovations.
The suspects were hired to help everyone move out of their homes. Instead they moved in to take what they wanted.
“She saw these guys carrying items from one house back to their truck, she thought that was odd,” explained McDonald.
She was an alert neighbor who did more than just watch a crime happen..
“She decided to take pictures.”
She watched the burglars take everything of value from the trailer, and then walk away.
Their mistake? They came back.
“They came to move more mobile homes out of the park,” said McDonald. “When they returned she was able to see they were the same individuals, she picked up the phone, she called us and said they are back.”
That’s when police moved in to make an arrest. But getting all his cherished possessions back proved a little harder.
“When split up between all five people,” said McDonald. “They put it at their homes, they put it at friends of their homes, in vehicles, they spread it out.”
Seven search warrants in 3 counties and four agencies got involved.
“Every law enforcement agency we contacted for immediately helped us out,” said McDonald. “Every judge that we asked to get search warrants signed went out of their way to help us.”
“One (suspect) told us he threw a pistol into a dumpster in Bulloch County,” explained McDonald. “We had immediately contacted bulloch county, they had deputies go out and search those dumpsters before it fell into the hands of a child.”
Amazingly everything came back.
Bows, fishing gear. A taser, a gun and a stamp collection from around the world and around time. All worth money, and so much more.
“With sentimental value we can’t replace those items,” said McDonald. “We can’t go to the store and pick up another one of those items off the shelf, it wouldn’t be the same thing.”
All five men Adam Dietz, David Meyer, Deaon Holmes, Roy Champion Sr and Roy Champion Jr now face charges ranging from burglary to possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.
They also admitted they had been “cleaning out” other mobile homes in other spots. Detectives say more charges are possible.
But none of these arrests, or this entire case would be possible without that alert neighbor.