Floyd M. Young was being held Thursday in connection to one break-in on South Hanover Street in December, but police spokesman Darin Hickey said on Thursday they haven't ruled out the possibility he may have been involved in a string of burglaries that have taken place since.
"We just don't know at this point," Hickey said. "We've got evidence to tie him to one, but we'd be remiss if we didn't look at him for the others. But that's for the detectives to work out."
Nearly 60 Cape Girardeau homes have been hit by thieves so far this year, which is a nearly 40-percent increase over the same period last year. Victims are reporting in many cases that personal electronic devices such as cellphones and tablet computers had been taken.
In this case, which police said was reported Dec. 24 but could have taken place in previous days, an iPod was taken after someone smashed a rear-door entry and went into the house in South Hanover's 100 block. The renters, according to charging documents, were students at Southeast Missouri State University and were away for the holidays.
Police responded to a call from the house's landlord a minute before Christmas at 11:59 p.m., according to a probable-cause statement prepared by police Det. Jim Smith. A patrolman was dispatched and was greeted by the landlord, who told the officer he had been "watching for burglars" while the renters were away, Smith said.
The house was under surveillance, the landlord said, when damage to the door occurred, but the culprit or culprits could not be identified in the footage. The landlord returned to the house Christmas Eve and found a rock on the kitchen floor next to broken glass, Smith said in his report.
An evidence technician was sent to the house to take photographs and to look for fingerprints. Two latent prints were recovered. The prints were forwarded to the Missouri State Highway Patrol Crime Laboratory for comparison. A criminalist with the lab, Lindsay Lambert, completed her analysis and matched one of the prints to Young through the patrol's Automated Fingerprint Identification System, or AFIS.
On Feb. 5, Smith said, he and another detective interviewed Young who was under arrest on an unrelated charge. During the interview, Smith said, Young initially denied any involvement with the burglary, but eventually confessed.
Young gave a handwritten statement, Smith said, that said he and a juvenile went to the house when they knew the tenants were away and used a rock to gain entry by smashing the glass in the back door. Young denied that he stole anything, but he said the juvenile stole a gold iPod with a woman's name on it -- which matched the one reported missing by a victim, Smith said.
Young is to appear before Judge Gary Kamp at 11 a.m. Monday. Court records show he has yet to hire a lawyer.
100 block of Hanover Street, Cape Girardeau, MO