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Local Agency Finds Success with First Stop Stick Deployment: 3 Suspects Taken Into Custody After Breaking Into Over 40 Cars at 7 Hotel Locations.

May 9, 2024

By: Zach Madden

Category: Customer Stories, Stop Stick Products

Local Agency Finds Success with First Stop Stick Deployment: 3 Suspects Taken Into Custody After Breaking Into Over 40 Cars at 7 Hotel Locations.

https://www.wcpo.com/
https://www.wcpo.com/news/local-news/butler-county/west-chester/pd-2-teens-19-year-old-arrested-after-40-vehicles-broken-into-in-west-chester

WEST CHESTER TOWNSHIP, Ohio — Three people were arrested for breaking into over 40 cars at hotel parking lots in West Chester.

Police arrested a 15-year-old, a 16-year-old and 19-year-old Vincent Lamont Bankhead Jr. The two juveniles were charged with receiving stolen property, obstructing official business and possessing criminal tools. Vincent Bankhead Jr. was charged with obstructing official business and receiving stolen property.

“Right now, we have over 40 cars. We continue to get reports most of them just had their windows broken,” West Chester Police Captain Seth Hagaman said. “It appeared the suspects were looking for something in particular, likely money and handguns.”

Hagaman said they got a report of a car alarm going off at a hotel at 2:15 a.m.

“The units got into the area and then located a car that then fled from them,” Hagaman said. “They got into a pursuit with this vehicle and they were able to make two different attempts with Stop Sticks to flatten the tires and they were successful in that.”

He said the car stopped on I-75, and all three people ran from the vehicle into the woods near Sharonville.

“A drone located a heat signature in a vehicle where they were hiding, and so then the officers were able to take them into custody,” he said. “The vehicle involved in the pursuit was a rental car that we’ve now determined was a stolen rental car.”

Police also recovered two loaded semi-automatic handguns. They found one in the suspect’s vehicle and one in the pocket of one of the suspects.

Police didn’t say if the two guns they found were stolen from any of the cars.

“We think a lot of these car break-ins are targeted at stealing firearms and obviously those are used in crimes later on, so for us being able to stop that and get those guns off the street as well as getting the people behind these large number of vehicle break-ins is a really important thing for the community,” Hagaman said.

He said they used a specific tool to break into the cars.

“We do know they were using a specialized tool to punch the windows so basically they were going car to car very quickly, breaking glass, causing damage, without regard to the inconvenience of the owner it’s causing,” he said.

Hagaman said the investigation is ongoing as reports continue to come in. They are investigating to see if these break-ins are tied to others in the area.

He said he wants the community to stop leaving guns in their cars.

“Things like this can happen and bad things can happen with those guns,” he said.

Link to article by Jessica Hart: https://www.wcpo.com/news/local-news/butler-county/west-chester/pd-2-teens-19-year-old-arrested-after-40-vehicles-broken-into-in-west-chester