Despite being threatened, a Canterbury Road resident called police that helped lead to the arrest of three car thieves, said.
Ptl. Chad Rybka, with the assistance of Ptl. Kevin Boone and Det. Kenneth Shannon, on Tuesday arrested Vaughanet Torrence, 29, and Ralph Harris, 27, both of Newark, and Louis Walker, 18, address unknown.
According to a statement released by police on Wednesday, a Canterbury Road resident reported several individuals going through his neighbor’s vehicle Tuesday at about 7 a.m.
When the resident confronted them, they threatened him with violence if he did anything, police said. They then fled to a nearby vehicle and departed the area, police said.
Police said the witness, however, was able to obtain a partial registration for the vehicle and called police. Moments later, Rybka stopped the vehicle on Main Street. Of the three occupants, two males inside matched the description given by the witness on Canterbury Road, police said.
During the motor vehicle stop, numerous items were found that appeared to have been stolen, police said. As officers were on the scene, the Police Department began receiving numerous calls from residents reporting that vehicles had been broken into, police said.
In total, 13 vehicles were broken into and items removed, police said. Additionally, a resident of Woodland Road had two motor vehicles stolen, police said. During the investigation, officers were able to determine the stolen vehicles were taken to Newark, police said.
Det. Sean Plumstead and Lt. Darren Dachisen responded to Newark and located both of the stolen cars, police said. They were secured and returned to Madison for processing, and subsequently returned to the owner, police said.
The location of the burglaries were Woodland Road, Canterbury Road, Main Street, Park Lane, Dellwood Drive, Magnolia Court and Kensington Road.
The investigation is continuing and additional charges may be forthcoming, police said.
The three men apprehended were transported to police headquarters and all charged with two counts of theft of a motor vehicle, then taken to the Morris County Correctional Facility in lieu of $100,000 bail.
Detectives are continuing the investigation and will charge each with multiple counts of burglary and theft, police said.
The investigations revealed that a number of these vehicles were unlocked. Police urged all residents to be diligent in securing electronics in their homes, instead of leaving them in their vehicles. Items such as GPS units are targets for criminals, police said. Police advise not leaving laptop computers or visible change inside vehicles. All residents are urged to refrain from leaving the keys to their vehicles inside the car.
Residents are encouraged to call the police department when they see or hear anything that is out of the ordinary.
Anyone who has further information or would like additional tips on how to protect themselves and/or their property is asked to call Lt. Jerry Mantone at 973-593-3012.