Howard Lake-Waverly Herald, Feb. 4, 2002

Howard Lake burglar goes house to house, helps himself

By Lynda Jensen

Purses and cigarettes were snatched off kitchen tables, and cell phones were taken from cars during a midnight burglar's spree in Howard Lake Jan. 25.

One dozen homeowners were burglarized, probably between midnight and 4 a.m., according to law enforcement officials.

The Wright County Sheriff's Office took in at least seven reports. The Howard Lake Police Department recorded five reports, Officer Lenny Keyes said.

A suspicious white male was seen walking along Imhoff Avenue on foot about this time, according to the sheriff's office.

The actual number of thefts was unknown at first because some of the items ­ recovered in a ditch later ­ were not even reported missing, since the owners did not realize their valuables were taken, Keyes said.

The thief appeared to walk from house to house, and upon finding better loot, dropped what he had from the previous burglary, and continued with his spree, according to the sheriff's office.

Many people slept in their beds as the thief entered their homes, and helped himself to credit cards, purses, jewelry, and alcohol, according to the sheriff's office.

Curiously, the thief left behind half of what he stole. Recovered along the road were purses, wallets, several cell phones, sets of keys, and other items; although cash, checks, and other more valuable items are still missing, the sheriff's office said.

"We were scoped out," commented Shelly Reddemann.

The thief entered the Reddemanns' home via a small service entrance in their garage and took a one-of-a-kind watch, Donna Reddemann's purse, a cell phone, and a quart of schnapps, the sheriff's office said.

Dan Zander had credit cards, a set of keys, and a cell phone stolen, the sheriff's office reported.

"It was pretty bold," commented Mike Mitchell. The thief took cartons of cigarettes, a purse, which was later recovered, and a cell phone from the Mitchells.

Some exterior security lights were unscrewed to disable them, Mitchell said. The thief appeared to go through kitchen cupboards and the refrigerator, probably looking for alcohol, Mitchell said.

David and Nancy Grisso had keys and wallet taken.

Other thefts involved parked vehicles at Fairway Boulevard, Dutch Lake Trail, and Fifth Avenue. Taken was a credit card from a Mueller-Pribyl Utilities service vehicle, as well as keys, and cell phones, the sheriff's office said.

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