SPOKAN, WASHINGTON – Spokane Police Department has broken into a group of property crimes and found stolen property worth more than $ 100,000. Neighbors are still unsure the crime will stop.
Police say they were able to make the arrest because a concerned resident called with a report of the theft of a catalytic converter. That first call led police to search for more stolen property. It was the involvement of citizens that helped them understand the theft. However, those who live near one of the destroyed houses are worried about their neighborhood.
“I don’t feel so safe,” Darlene Haats said. She has lived in the East Garland since 1963.
Haats always keeps a close eye on her community because of the problems she sees in the neighborhood.
“My back opens up to the alley and you see some weird people walking down the alley,” she said.
Neighbors record this strange behavior on their cameras at any time of the night in the alleys.
“I see it on my camera. They are full of things, ”said Stella Murphy, who also lives near one of the houses where police raided. “They’re going to the other end of the quarter. They are there for five or 10 minutes, and when they return, their backpacks are empty. They are gone for an hour, and then they come back with full backpacks. “
Attentive neighbors helped police capture seven criminals responsible for stealing more than $ 100,000 worth of property. Police found various items in homes, cars and in shelters. Police say part of the found property was: catalysts, tools, IDs, credit and debit cards), toy coin machines, fire equipment, a number of weapons, cash, remittances, gift cards, fentanyl tablets “Mexi” and a pickup truck.
These neighbors are grateful to the police for the arrest, but are not sure that the crime will change.
“I think it’s horrible that the police arrest these people and then the judges release them,” Haats said.
“These people don’t care. They don’t care, “Murphy said. “They just do whatever they want because they know that even if they get in jail and get in trouble, they’ll still come out in the morning.”
Police say it is rare to break up such a large group of criminals, but what is stolen is everywhere.
“Commercial theft has become extremely lively since the laws changed and the bad guys became more aggressive,” Brian Eckersley said. He is a sergeant of the SPEAR team, which specializes in crimes related to stolen property.
He says police will continue to investigate crimes and make similar arrests, but he cannot guarantee that these people will remain behind bars.
“These crimes have fingers,” he said. “They’re all going in different directions, and that’s an example of that.”
Haats says she just wants to see change and feel safe in her home again, “removing these guys from the streets and our neighborhood.”
They don’t want to continue to fall victim to crime that they feel isn’t getting better.
“I was torn off. New tires were stolen from my truck, ”Murphy concluded. “I’m not making a lot of money right now and I’m retired, and that’s ridiculous.”
At the time of writing, only three of the original seven detainees are still in prison.
COPYRIGHT 2022 BY KXLY. ALL RIGHTS ARE PROTECTED. THIS MATERIAL CANNOT BE PUBLISHED, SUBMITTED, REPRESENTED OR REPRODUCED.