Six suspects have been arrested for their role in four separate breaking and entering investigations, Cranston Police announced today.
The break-ins happened in three different parts of the city. Five of the six suspects are being held at the Adult Correctional Institutions.
It all started last Thursday when a house on Auburn Street was broken into around 2 p.m. The homeowner came home and saw some personal items were left in the driveway and her rear door had been pried open.
Inside, it appeared that the suspects stole a TV, laptop, two guitars and some jewelry and coins.
A watchful neighbor saw what was regarded as suspicious activity and wrote down the suspects' license plate and a description of what they looked like.
Det. Sgt. Michael Pezzullo and Det. Jaime Cahill were now on the case and learned that the vehicle used in the break was a rental from Providence. Pezzulo went to the dealership to conduct surveillance and soon saw the suspect vehicle returning to the rental facility followed by another car occupied by two Hispanic males who matched the description from the Auburn Street break-in.
The two detectives walked up to the car and the passengers tried to conceal items between the seats, said Cranston Police Major Robert W. Ryan. A search of the car turned up property that had been stolen from the Auburn Street residence including a watch engraved with "World's Best Dad."
Police also found marijuana inside the vehicle.
Arrested were 26-year-old Jason Fernandes of 12 Oak St., Cranston and Joel Valdez, 24, of 56 Moore St., Providence. Both were charged with felony counts of receiving stolen goods and conspiracy to receive stolen goods. Valdez also was charged with marijuana possession.
Bail for the charges was set at $2,000 with surety and both are being held without bail at the ACI as Superior Court violators.
Four days later, two attempted breaking and enterings occurred on Rosehill Drive and Oak Hill Drive respectively.
In both instances, witnesses said the suspects looked like a young couple in their mid 30s. At Rosehill Drive, the resident was actually home when he saw a white male with a backpack trying to open a screen to the rear of the house. The suspect walked away when confronted.
Around the same time, the same pair were seen coming from the front porch of a house on Oak Hill Drive. There, when confronted by a resident, the couple asked about buying a car in the yard "that was not even listed for sale, which [the homeowner] felt was extremely suspicious," police said.
The next day, Cahill retrieved video recordings from the nearby Del's Lemonade. It showed the suspicious couple walking out of the neighborhood.
That video was shown to officers during roll call. It paid off when Officer Kim Carroll was on a road construction detail just after 1 p.m. on Reservoir Avenue when she saw the couple.
They were positively identified as the same people involved in the two attempted break-ins and were charged with attempted breaking and entering and conspiracy.
They were identified as Jason Martin, 36, of 4 Oak Road, Coventry, and Cheri Joslin, 35, of 22 Fiume St., West Warwick.
Joslin's bail was set at $10,000 personal recognizance. Martin is being held without bail as a Superior Court violator.
Meanwhile, about 30 minutes before Joslin and Martin were arrested, police were dispatched to a breaking and entering in progress on Meshanticut Valley Parkway.
"Once again, an alert neighbor spotted suspicious activity and was able to give a detailed description of two white males in their thirties leaving the house and getting into a maroon service van with distinctive lettering on the side," Ryan said.
The description was broadcast to all units and within moments, Officers Julie Furgasso and Michael Iacone saw the van speeding north on Dyer Avenue.
The suspects saw the officers and abruptly turned onto Mica Street and drove through two back yards, knocking down a chain link fence. They came to a stop after crashing into a cement staircase to the rear of a Dyer Avenue house.
The suspects jumped out and attempted to flee, but were soon caught.
The two men, brothers, were identified as 33-year-old Michael Marrapese of 18 Andrews St., Providence and Steven Marrapese, 32, of 1101 Cranston St., Cranston.
The van was not registered and it appeared that the Marrapese brothers were borrowing it, police said. The van was impounded and a search turned up property that had been taken from the Meshanticut Valley house.
Both men were charged with felony breaking and entering, receiving stolen goods and conspiracy. They also charged Michael Marrapese with obstruction of justice and elduing police in a high speed pursuit and driving without a license.
Bail was set at $30,000 with surety for Michael and he is being held as a Superior Court violator. Steven's bail was set at $25,000 with surety. He is being held as a violator as well.