3 men, 1 teen facing charges after rash of vehicle break-ins
Three men and a teenager are behind bars in Tuscaloosa County and facing charges of breaking into vehicles around town.
The recent car break-ins arrests are from two unrelated incidents: one late last month in the Forest Lake area and another south of Hargrove Road.
“We were able to arrest two 19 year olds and a 14-year-old suspect in those cases and have charged each of those with the seven counts from one night,” said Tuscaloosa Police Capt. Kip Hart. “We are still looking to see if they were involved in some of the other ones that we have had in the Forest Lake campus area and then south of Hargrove Road.”
Investigators identified the suspects from multiple home surveillance cameras in the Forest Lake area on Aug. 25.
The second arrest was made early Friday morning.
“Bryan Covey was arrested after patrol caught him walking away from a vehicle where the victim had video of him being inside the car,” Hart said. “He was also charged with one count of (unlawful breaking and entering) in that instance at Rosedale.”
Hart said video surveillance was crucial in apprehending all of these suspects.
“We’re expanding the city’s network of cameras, but the role individual cameras play with ring video of it and other home security footage,” Hart said. “It gave us a good working point when these crimes first occurred. Like the ones from Rosedale. She was able to capture him on video with her phone I believe and then the ones from Forest Lake, we’ve been able to get several Ring videos that have helped identify other people too.”
Hart said if you must leave valuables in your car, make sure they are out of sight.
“It is something that is really easy to fix,” Hart said. “Just make sure you take your keys inside. The majority of our cars, either the key has been left in them or the cars are left running. If you are going to lock your door, make sure you take the property inside or put it out of view. We have started seeing now that they’ll smash out a window if they see a backpack. Especially where students live. If they see a backpack there are likely some electronics that are some values in there. So, either take it inside or hide it in your vehicle.”
TPD has investigated 478 car break-in cases so far this year.
The teen is 14 and is being held at the Tuscaloosa County Juvenile Detention facility. Because of his age, his name will not be released.