Boy, 17, denies breaking into highway dept., similar crimes

Cary Ashby • Oct 29, 2015 at 12:52 PM


A 17-year-old Norwalk boy denied breaking into the Huron County Highway Department during a juvenile court hearing Wednesday.

However, Huron County Sheriff's Detective Sgt. Dane Howard said the suspect admitted to committing the July 23 crime during an Aug. 9 interview. The detective said employees named the boy as the suspect because he was a former highway department employee.

They boy was in custody during the interview at the Sandusky County Juvenile Detention Center, where he has been since Aug. 8. Huron County Magistrate Danita Conway ordered the suspect to remain in custody until a further hearing could be scheduled.

Howard said the boy was in custody "for a series of similar crimes ... in and around the city."

On July 23, the Norwalk boy is accused of prying open and damaging a window at the highway department and then reportedly stealing $220 in cash, Conway said. The suspect is believed to have broken into a Benedict Avenue restaurant June 25 and stolen $200 as well as 48 compact discs and a stereo system from a vehicle parked on Anna Drive during an Aug. 7 incident, she continued.

Also on Aug. 7, the boy is accused of being the "look out" while another person stole a portable CD player and a pair of headphones from a woman's car. During another Aug. 7 incident, the juvenile is suspected of kicking in the door of an East Seminary Street business and stealing $30, Conway said.

The defendant is charged with multiple counts of breaking and entering, theft and criminal damaging. He also faces one count each of complicity to theft and obstructing official business, the latter charge stemming from an Erie County Sheriff's Office incident on July 12.

"Four of the 11 complaints are felonies," Conway told the boy, adding he could face between $4,000 and $5,000 in fines if he's convicted. "If any of the complaints are proven true, you (could) be on probation ... until your 21st birthday."

Also if convicted, the boy could face up to 90 days in detention and 200 hours of community service. Conway said the defendant could serve part of his sentence at the Huron County Jail once he turns 18 in mid-November.

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