Police see spike in burglary arrests

The arrests are attributed to a high number of leads.

Police have arrested eight suspects since Nov. 3 in relation to 19 separate burglaries, a Columbia Police Department news release stated.

“This is definitely one of the bigger spikes we’ve seen in burglaries,” CPD spokeswoman Jill Wieneke said.

The dates of the burglaries span from this month to the past summer, but CPD tracked down suspects last week.

One of the arrested suspects is 19-year-old Michael Maurer, who admitted to committing 11 burglaries in Columbia, four of which were at Columbia Public Schools, the news release stated.

He was arrested Nov. 3 after a police chase. He was burglarizing a house in the 1900 block of Vassar Court, and a neighbor reported seeing a strange vehicle with two suspects with hoods knocking loudly on the front door, according to the release.

The neighbor was able to provide the license plate number to officers, who tracked down the driver whose name has not been released because she is 16 years old, the release stated. The suspect provided officers with information leading to the identification of Maurer.

Officers saw two suspects, Maurer and a man they identified as Tervon Harvey, 21, run into the woods behind the residence with a computer. Officers arrested the two and obtained a search warrant to Maurer’s residence where police found multiple items of stolen property.

A week later, another suspected burglar, Daniel T. Barnes, 20, admitted using a stolen credit card at the Buchroeders diamond store on Broadway. According to the release, Barnes told police he stole the credit card from a residence while posing as a solicitor collecting for a school trip.

Barnes also admitted he took part in two other recent burglaries. Barnes’ suspected associate, 17-year-old David A. Stone was arrested on the same day.

Throughout the week, CPD made three more arrests on counts of burglary, including one in which the suspect stole an Xbox controller and games. The suspect is Daniel R. Spene, 19, who entered a home on 1505 Affirmed Drive and stole the gaming system. The family members were present in another part of the house when he entered.

“As far as the arrests, it’s uncommon that we arrested this many people this quickly,” Wieneke said.

Some of the stolen property has been recovered and returned to the owners, and investigators are working to recover the other items, the news release stated.

Wieneke attributes the uncommonly high number of arrests to a high number of successful leads.

“A lot of that is because the detectives did a really good job, and we had some really good tips by the public,” she said.

She also attributes the higher number of arrests to a higher number of crimes.

“In general, we see more than normal the closer we get to the holidays, because people anticipate being able to get those higher ticket items,” she said.

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