Connecticut State Police are investigating a burglary at an auto repair garage in Southbury that was interrupted on Thursday morning.
Employees arriving at Classic Coach on Southford Road noticed two men stealing items from the property just before 7 a.m. According to one worker, the suspects were taking aluminum and said they knew the owner.
"They said they were tying down their load," said John Traonetta, who added that the shop had been burglarized two weeks ago.
Employees told police that the two suspects got into a red truck and drove off from the scene.
The workers followed the truck, which fled on Route 188 westbound, and called police on their cell phones.
The two suspects traveled about four miles into Oxford and left the truck abandoned in the Lutheran Church parking lot near the intersection of Great Hill Road and Route 67, police said.
Police, along with a K-9 unit, searched the area for the two suspects, who had fled on foot.
Troopers found John Polakowski, 20, of Waterbury, hiding at the Oxford water pump station house. He was taken into custody without incident and was arraigned in Superior Court in Waterbury later that day, police said.
However, state police continued to search a large wooded area with a K-9 unit, but were unsuccessful.
During their investigation, police determined that the second suspect is Wayne Conroy, 33, of Naugatuck. Conroy is wanted in connection with several other crimes, police said.
Police towed the truck to a nearby automobile shop where all the stolen aluminum was recovered.
Aluminum is in high demand, according to Classic Coach owner James Mongelli.
"Times are getting tough," he said. "People are getting desperate."
Since his shop has been burglarized twice in two weeks, Mongelli said he is looking into ways of keeping burglars out including more fences and signs. The business has cameras throughout the grounds.
The case is under investigation by state police.
Copyright 2012 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
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