A visit to the website CrimeReports.com can be an eye-opening experience. Users can search crimes by municipality, dates and even type of crime committed. Using Cranston as a parameter, between Dec. 1 and Jan. 1, the site reveals that there were more than 40 thefts from vehicles in the city limits.
It’s a crime of opportunity, and while the number of local vehicle larcenies is still high, the Cranston Police Department is looking to stop the trend in its tracks.
In the early morning hours of Dec. 27, Cranston Police arrested 19-year-old Michael McGuire and 22-year-old Douglas Lecuivre while in the act of committing larcenies from vehicles. They were charged with larceny from a motor vehicle and conspiracy to commit larceny.
This marks the fifth time that larceny suspects have been apprehended in the act in the last four months.
“These arrests are reflective of our officers’ efforts to inform the residents to keep their vehicles locked and to call us immediately if they note anything suspicious,” said Chief of Police Col. Marco Palombo.
In the Dec. 27 case, police responded after an alert citizen spotted the two men walking yard to yard just after midnight. The men attempted to flee the scene when Cranston Police arrived. After a foot chase, Sergeant Justin Dutra apprehended McGuire while he tried to hide under a tarp in a backyard. Officers Jeremy Machado and Bradford Duclos apprehended the second suspect, Lecuivre, a short time later. He was additionally charged with a count of resisting arrest. Both men were found to be in possession of a GPS unit, loose change, jewelry and cigarettes.
Palombo believes more thefts would have occurred if not for the presence of mind of residents. He applauded not only the person who called in the tip to Police, but also the savvy vehicle owners who keep their doors locked at night. During the investigation that followed the two arrests, footprints indicated that the suspects attempted to enter more vehicles but were deterred by locked doors – a message reiterated by officers at several public safety and crime watch meetings over recent months.
“These efforts have led to 54 percent more arrests and 64 percent more clearances than the same time last year,” Palombo said. “This is significant. Our officers know the residents are depending on them, and they are eager to rise to the occasion.”