Deputy: Suspect in break-ins returned to scene the next day
EUGENE, Ore. - A man accused of breaking into cars at an off-road vehicle staging area was captured after deputies checked surveillance footage at places where stolen credit cards were being used, the Lane County Sheriff's Office.
Sweet Home Police arrested Branden Sherrill on Wednesday.
He is now in the Lane Coutny jail charged with 14 counts which include identity theft and theft in the first degree.
The Lane County Sherriff's Office started the investigation started May 16, a day after a report that someone broke into a car at the ATV staging area near Shotgun Creek, stealing a wallet, camera and cell phones.
The break in the case came when a victim noticed his stolen credit cards were being used around town at Wal-Mart and Chuckie Cheese and notified the Sheriff's Office.
Deputy Marvin Combs recovered surveillance video from those locations and was able to get a positive ID on Sherrill.
Sherrill's parole officer helped law enforcement locate Sherrill in Sweet Home.
During the investigation, Deputy Combs realized Sherrill went back to the area where he made the initial break in.
"My thought was when he went back on the 20th that he was looking for another victim," he said. "I don't believe anybody's vehicle was parked in the staging area based on my camera at that time. It was an empty staging area, so he did a 20 second in and out loop."
Including all the credit card charges Deputy Combs said Sherrill stole more than $2,000 in property.
Combs used this case as a reminder to all residents not to leave any valuables in cars at trailheads when going to enjoy the outdoors.