Second man arrested in connection with 500 car break-ins - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Second man arrested in connection with 500 car break-ins

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The following photo of Eric Johnson provided by the South Windsor Police Department. The following photo of Eric Johnson provided by the South Windsor Police Department.

A second man was arrested Monday in connection with 500 car burglaries throughout the Greater Hartford Area.

Eric Van Allen Johnson, 32, from Springfield, MA is accused of breaking into motor vehicles in several towns including South Windsor, Glastonbury, Bloomfield and Vernon over the summer.

According to police, Johnson along with Andrew Dupree, 20, from Holyoke, MA, and a 16-year-old juvenile were using Google Maps to look for homes with big roofs or residences near golf courses. Police said Johnson and Dupree thought victims, who fit those descriptions, were in affluent neighborhoods.

Johnson and Dupree would then drive slowly through the neighborhood while they looked for unlocked cars, according to police. When the suspects found an unlocked car, police said the suspects would rifle through the vehicle and take items in plain sight including electronics, power tools and spare change.

Johnson was charged with 17 counts of third-degree burglary and third-degree conspiracy to commit burglary along with one count of fifth-degree larceny and conspiracy to commit fifth-degree larceny. Johnson's charges stem from 17 car break-ins in Glastonbury.

Dupree was arrested on Oct. 30. The 16-year-old juvenile has not been arrested at this time.

Besides locking your doors, police are advising residents to always take the following precautions:

  • Never attach a tag with your name and address to a key ring. If the keys are lost or stolen, the tag will lead the thief directly to your car, and your home.
  • Avoid leaving an automobile unattended in public parking lots for an extended period of time. A car is five times more likely to be stolen from an unattended lot, than from the street or an attended lot.
  • When you park the car, remove valuable possessions from the seat. These items tempt thieves, and should be locked in the trunk.
  • If your car is stolen, notify the police immediately, and have the following information ready: your license plate number and state, the vehicle make, model, color, and year, the vehicle identification number, and also provide a list of distinctive features, and special accessories and their serial numbers.

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