Springfield (KMTR) – With help from one of his victims, Springfield police were able to track and arrest a suspected burglar a short time after at least three homes were hit.
James Dewitt Crandell, 27, of Cottage Grove was arrested on charges of robbery, burglary and theft.
Shortly after 5 p.m. Wednesday, police say a man reported a burglary in progress at his home. He chased the suspect out of his house toward the West D boat ramp in Springfield. At one point, the victim said the suspect turned and said, “Don’t do it! I’ve got a gun!” The man continued to follow the suspect at a distance.
Two police officers, one with a police dog, searched a bike path in the area. A passerby reported seeing someone hiding in the bushes. Police say they ordered Crandell out of the bushes, but that he refused and became hostile. After a struggle, Crandell was arrested and stolen property was found where he had been hiding. No gun was found.
Investigators say they were able to connect Crandell to two other houses that had been entered a few hours earlier. One resident said his home was entered through a second story window, another said his home was entered through an unlocked door.