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Illinois Burglar Caught Trying to Sell Stolen Property on Craigslist

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March 13, 2012
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Illinois Burglar Caught Trying to Sell Stolen Property on Craigslist

The average burglar is not a highly intelligent person – to anyone who is smart, it’s clear that there are better ways to earn a living than breaking into homes to steal cash, jewelry, and electronics, often to support a drug habit. Remember, burglary is usually a random act, not a carefully planned heist such as we see on TV or in the movies. And if we agree that the average burglar is not the sharpest tool in the shed, it may explain a report from Crystal Lake, IL, of a burglar who was caught when he tried to sell stolen property on Craigslist. He may not be the stupidest burglar I’ve written about, but he’s probably in the top ten!

A man with a lengthy criminal past was caught selling tools on Craigslist that he allegedly stole from two far northwest suburban hardware stores, authorities said Wednesday. Wallace A. Henshall, 47, has been charged with felony counts of theft, burglary and possession of burglary tools after allegedly trying to sell the items he had stolen from Menards in Crystal Lake and Fox Lake to an undercover police officer Friday. Henshall was not an employee of Menards.

Facts Behind the Case

The undercover operations revolved around several reported thefts at the stores since December, according to Crystal Lake Deputy Police Chief Eugene Lowery. The most recent theft allegedly took place this month, when merchandise was stolen from the Crystal Lake location. During that incident, a person entered the business by removing a glass pane from an overhead door adjacent to the store’s garden center, and replaced it with a piece of Plexiglas, according to police [not a typo: the Plexiglas trade name only has one “s”]. Shoe prints were also found in the snow leading from the store to an adjacent self-storage facility.

I just love these footprint stories. We’ve seen plenty of burglars leave tracks in the snow from the scene of the crime right back to where they live. But this one gets better…

Good Investigative Work

An internal investigation by the hardware chain’s corporate office had identified Henshall as a possible suspect in the disappearance of the hand and power tools, as well as copper wiring, Lowery said. Authorities later discovered he rented a storage unit at the adjacent facility, and after reviewing video surveillance from both businesses, obtained search and arrest warrants.

The Sting

Undercover officers contacted Henshall by telephone Friday after discovering he had several tools listed for sale on Craigslist. He agreed to meet with them and was later arrested on the Fox Lake arrest warrant for burglary. Officers allegedly found multiple items that had been stolen from the stores while searching his storage unit, according to authorities. A 2011 Ford Ranger, which allegedly had been stolen from a dealership in McHenry and stripped down to the chassis, also was found.

While this is not a story about a residential burglary, we are dealing with the same caliber of criminal. If anything, the article does demonstrate the point that we are not protecting our homes from rocket scientists. But burglars are persistent, and there are plenty of them, as we know. That’s why it just makes sense to increase your peace of mind with a monitored alarm system – preferably one with safer cellular monitoring, the kind FrontPoint sells with every system. With a burglary happening every 14 seconds somewhere in the US, you need a wireless home alarm system. Along with 100% cellular protection, add in our industry-best interactive monitoring, and you can see why FrontPoint is the leader in wireless home security, and the #1 ranked home alarm company in the US.  When you are ready for safer, smarter, simpler, more affordable, and virtually impossible to defeat, then FrontPoint is your clear choice.

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