Charges added against Stoddard County man who left state to escape arrest

Tuesday, January 25, 2011 ~ Updated 4:15 PM

BLOOMFIELD, Mo. -- Chris Rauscher, the Malden, Mo., man previously charged with stealing a vehicle from a local car dealership after he was suspected of taking part in a local burglary, now faces further charges.

Stoddard County Prosecuting Attorney Russ Oliver had indicated late last week that the 31-year-old former Dexter man would likely face charges of burglary in addition to charges filed in 2010.

Oliver said Monday that Rauscher now faces felony second-degree burglary and felony first-degree property damage charges.

The additional charges stem from Rauscher's alleged involvement in the burglary of Budget Mobile Homes on the north side of Dexter in July 2010.

The charges allege Rauscher "knowingly damaged a surveillance camera, a secured door attached to a structure and window" and that he cut camera wires, pried the company's door and shattered glass at the business, all of which exceeded $500 in damages.

Rauscher was questioned by Det. Cory Mills of the Dexter Police Department following the incident, but fled the area just before a second scheduled meeting with Mills in July. Rauscher was subsequently identified as the intruder via the surveillance video obtained from Budget Mobile Homes. A white SUV in his possession was also identified on camera at the scene. While Rauscher initially denied any involvement, he later told Mills he and his wife stopped at the mobile home business to inquire about purchasing a mobile home.

He fled the area in a vehicle from a local dealership on the day he was scheduled to meet again with local police and was located in November by authorities in New Orleans, working in a cafe there. His wife, Ashli Rauscher, and the couple's daughter were located in New Orleans as well and were returned to the area following his arrest. His wife has not been charged with any crime.

Ashli Rauscher, in an interview with Mills after her return to the area, confirmed she and her husband had, as he told police, paid a visit to Budget Mobile Homes on the day of the burglary. She also told Mills she had driven her husband back to the business after hours and had dropped him off, returning "a few minutes later" to pick him up.

"Ashli advised [her husband] told her he cut the camera wires" at the business and had "gone inside a modular home and activated the alarm, so he left," Mills said.

Ashli Rauscher also told police her husband had a fresh cut on his right index finger which she said occurred when he had broken a window in one of the homes. Rauscher told police when questioned in July that the finger was cut in an accident at his home.

Mills said in his report that Rauscher's wife admitted to having fled the area with their daughter "to avoid law enforcement in reference to the burglary investigation."

Rauscher also faced theft and failure to appear charges in Cape Girardeau and Dunklin counties

Rauscher has been in the county jail since his December extrication from New Orleans. Bond has yet to be determined for the most recent charges. His previous bond was set at $45,000. Charges are also pending against him in Cape Girardeau County, where he is alleged to have wrecked a vehicle from a dealership there and allegedly reported it as stolen. He faces failure to appear charges out of Dunklin County as well.

Pertinent address:

Dexter, MO

Malden, MO

New Orleans, LA

Map of pertinent addresses

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