Change thief is capturedPublished 8:18pm Wednesday, July 24, 2013
A suspect was arrested in a recent change thief case, in which a male suspect was going to multiple convenience stores in Dallas County, busting open the windows and using a hammer to break the glass on coin amusement games.
The amusement games the suspect has stolen from, reaching into the broken glass and grabbing handfuls of quarters and throwing them into a pillowcase — are ones in which the player puts a quarter in a slot, hoping the coin will land on a moving landing strip to win a prize.
“We were able to get some intelligence this weekend when new leads came in from a city burglary case and the suspect wore similar clothes and had the same M.O.,” Sgt. Mike Granthum with the Dallas County Sheriff’s Department said, explaining the suspect arrested was from Autauga County. “We identified his name as Edward Watts. He was pulled over, we went to headquarters, he was questioned and admitted everything. He said someone was with him and helped him do the crimes.”
Granthum said because of another individual involved, another arrest is pending. More charges are pending for Watts, as the city has cases they believe are linked to him.
The sheriff’s department admitted they spent lots of manpower and overtime in searching for the suspect. Granthum said overall Watts allegedly caused thousands of dollars in damage just by stealing several hundreds of dollars worth of coins.
“All of those windows he busted were $500-$800 a piece and he broke into some stores twice,” Granthum said in why the department was adamant about finding who was responsible.
Watts is believed to have broken into Dave’s Market in Valley Grande twice, the Valley Grande Kwik Stop and then robbed a donation jar for literacy at the Dollar General in Valley Grande.
“His pathway for robbing goes from Plantersville all the way to Selma in the city,” Granthum said. “It started in June and ended this weekend.”
Watts, 32, is charged with five counts of burglary 3rd with a probation hold. He has a bond of $75,000.