Alert neighbor thwarts burglary

Published 12:00 am Friday, January 28, 2005

Rodriguez Goldsby, 19 of Selma, walked into a business on Highway 41 and filled out a job application. What allegedly happened next, however, grabbed the attention of an alert neighbor and eventually the Dallas County Sheriff’s office.

“When he left he went straight across the street, broke into somebody’s house,” Sheriff Harris Huffman said. “A neighbor watched him pull out the TV, so he called it in and got in his truck and followed him.

We were able to stop him down here off of Water Avenue.”

Email newsletter signup

That alert neighbor helped the Sheriff’s Department make their 14th burglary arrest in the last 60 days.

“Fourteen different people, 14 different burglaries,” Huffman said. “Not related to any of them, we don’t think it’s a burglary ring. It’s just people out here stealing.”

“What’s so ironic is that none of the 14 we’ve arrested were connected,” Pugh said. “Normally if you arrest somebody you’ve got two or three involved with seven or eight different burglaries.”

The burglaries have been household type item Chief Deputy Randy Pugh added, TV’s, guns, electronics and cameras.

‘The arrests were made all over the county,” Huffman said, “Plantersville, Burnsville, Sardis, Marion Junction area, Orrville, just all over the place.”

While both Huffman and Pugh citizens to be safe, they praised the neighbor for getting involved and helping to stop the robbery.

“He called dispatch and got the units in route,” Pugh said. “We were able to cut him off at the bridge, got the property back and made an arrest. He did it in a safe way, he stayed behind the vehicle.”

“He wasn’t in any immediate danger by trying to stop the guy,” Huffman said. “We don’t like to see that happen. Call us.”

Goldsby, of Martin Luther King Street, faces burglary charges.

Pugh said the number of burglaries reported in the county last year was down 16 percent from the previous year and there hasn’t been a recent rise in the number.

“I hope that trend is attributed to some of these arrests we were able to make,” he said.

Pugh said community involvement has been key to turning the tide.

“We’ve received tips on the Crime Stoppers to help us on this,” Pugh said. “Like yesterday, the community got involved.

That’s what we need, the awareness to get out.”

Huffman praised communities with Neighborhood Watch programs, like Valley Grande.

“We just went there about two weeks ago,” he said.

“They’ve gotten pretty strong,” Pugh added. “They’ve got several people involved in that.”

That kind of help can be invaluable to the police, Huffman said.

“A lot of burglary suspects are getting wise and wearing gloves or not touching everything when they go in,” he said. “Just because you get a fingerprint, we’re not set up like CSI, we have to get a suspect to classify that too.”

Huffman also stressed that make, model and serial numbers are vital if residents want to retrieve their merchandise after it has been stolen.

“You’d be surprised how many burglaries we’ve had where all they can say is it was a SONY television,” he said. “Well, there’s millions of those things.

They need to write down serial numbers on everything that they own. Without a serial number, it does not do any good.”

To report information about these burglaries or any other crime, call Crime Stoppers at 866-44-CRIME/1-866-442-7463.