First reported 5/13/2009 3:15 p.m.
A string of early morning commercial break-ins that was beginning to frustrate police may be over thanks to the arrest of three men in nearby LaGrange.
Between January and March, investigators in Forest Park had managed to capture video footage of several suspects believed to be responsible for at least three burglaries. The problem, police had said, was they could not identify the men in the videos.
Adding to the frustration was an inability to nab the culprits in the face of solid leads. Police had a description of the gray van used in the heists along with an informed expectation that the burglaries were being committed in the morning, just before the start of the business day.
Then, three men driving a similarly described van were arrested April 30 in LaGrange after allegedly breaking into a Radio Shack store at about 5:30 a.m. Alfred Wright, Richard Carter and Terry Wilder were charged in that incident and later interviewed by Forest Park detectives.
“They definitely did five [burglaries] in our town,” Sgt. Mike Keating said. “We were right on the van, we just couldn’t find them.”
Both Wilder and Carter are from Chicago. Wright lives in Bellwood, according to Keating.
Forest Park police intend to file at least one felony charge against the suspects, but are continuing to investigate whether the men can be linked to other break-ins. Last month, authorities here said they suspected the men were responsible for burglarizing Thiesse Plumbing on Circle, a U.S. Cellular store on Roosevelt, and for two separate incidents at a south side business where an estimated $7,000 in computer equipment was stolen.