PERU — A recent crime wave has fallen over the Peru area and local businesses and homes are the targets.
The latest crimes have included a break in at the Stewarts convenience store on 2997 Route 22, Dec. 5 and a home burglary on Dec. 12 at a residence on Eccles Road.There have also been several crimes dating back as far as September.
Several arrests have been made, including the arrest of Mathew Pelkey on Dec. 20. State Police arrested 18-year-old Pelkey of Keeseville in connection with a burglary that occurred Feb. 26. Investigator Larry Cragle said Pelkey was arrested for the burglary of a residence on Mark Way in Peru, where he and two others stole jewelry and antique coins. Cragle said Pelkey is not being looked at for the other burglaries.
In a release issued on Dec. 15, State Police asked for the assistance of the public in solving the 21 reported residential burglaries that have occurred in Peru, West Chazy, Altona and the surrounding areas.
The release stated subjects involved appear to be targeting unoccupied homes stealing televisions, laptop computers, other electronic devices, tools and money.
Town Supervisor Peter Glushko said the break-ins are leaving residents feeling nervous about the safety of their personal property.
“It’s got everyone on edge especially with the holiday season coming around,” Glushko said. “People like to feel secure during the holiday season and right now they just aren’t able to because there are people out there who feel they’ve found an easy way to make some money.”
Senior State Police Investigator Tracy Eggleston said the crimes seem to be similar based on close proximity to one another and similar items are being stolen, but each case is being investigated individually.
“We are investigating suspects but right now we are looking at these crimes separately,” Eggleston said.
State Police and the Clinton County Sheriff’s Office are working together to pursue all leads in an effort to solve the burglaries. Glushko said he advises all residents to make sure all their doors are locked including their garages and sheds to make sure that they aren’t inviting an easy break -in.
“I just hope the people doing it get caught as soon as possible,” Glushko said.
Because many of these incidents are happening during the day, Eggleston said all neighbors should be looking out for eachother, and report any suspicious activity, vehicles or persons to authorities. Eggleston said eyewitnesses should obtain a complete description of the people involved and any vehicles including the license plate number if possible. The public is cautioned against confronting anyone suspected of criminal activity, he said.
“We don’t encourage anyone to engage someone they don't know but everyone should be looking out for each other,” Eggleston said.
Anyone with information regarding these burglaries, stolen property or suspicious activity, is asked to call the New York State Police at 563-3761.