Last Thursday at about 10 AM, I was patrolling in the neighborhood of 29th and Taylor Streets when Communications dispatched a call for a suspicious looking individual walking up and down 29th Street. The caller was concerned that he was possibly "casing" the neighborhood for an opportunity to break into a house or a parked vehicle. The person who called in the complaint did not give their name, only that they lived on 29th Street.
The caller gave a good description of the individual, and when Communications broadcast the lookout, I realized that I had just passed him on the street not two minutes before. I immediately drove around the block and saw the individual walking down 29th towards Webster. After a short period of disagreement on his part as to whether or not he should stop and talk with me, I was finally able to get his identification and call in a wanted check. Several minutes passed, and as we waited, he tried to convince me that he was just in the area to visit relatives, although he could not remember exactly where they lived, and came up with a few equally dubious reasons for being on 29th Street that morning. I was not terribly suprised when Communications notified me that he was wanted in Prince William County Virginia on an oustanding, extraditable warrant for auto theft! The man was arrested and processed, and is on his way back to Virginia to face his outstanding auto theft charges.
Thanks are due to the resident who called and notified us of this suspicious individual. His/her vigilence may have saved a neighbor from coming home to find their home burglarized or their vehicle stolen, and helped us get one more wanted person off the streets of Mt. Rainier.
The best crime prevention tool is a good neighbor!