Glass-removing thief caught in the act: police

Saanich police have arrested a man they believe is responsible for a series of business break and enters over the past four months where windows were removed to gain access to buildings.

Const. Markus Anastasiades said the man was caught in the act early Thursday while under surveillance by street crime officers in the Burnside Road West-Harriet Road area. Officers watched the man walking to the rear of a business at the intersection. He appeared from behind the business as the alarm began to sound and was quickly taken into custody.

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The man had been identified as a suspect through evidence obtained by the Saanich police forensic identification section and information gleaned from a traffic stop by the Victoria police dog handler, Anastasiades said.

Since October, six liquor stores, one bank and a restaurant have had windows carefully removed. Large quantities of liquor and smaller electronics were stolen.

The 40-year old is facing eight counts of break and enter and one count of mischief. There were also warrants for his arrest for two break-ins in October. He remains in police custody, said Anastasiades.

Another man who was with the accused was seen breaking into a parked car, smashing the glass with a blow torch. He was arrested and charged with mischief under $5,000 and has been released on a promise to appear in court.

“This individual targeted local businesses in Saanich over the course of several months. Collaboration continues with the Victoria Police Department with their investigation into similar glass-removal type business break and enters,” said Anastasiades.

ldickson@timescolonist.com

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