Undercover DPS officers foil burglary in progress in St. Mary’s last night
Update, 3:28 p.m.: In a public safety alert issued this afternoon, the Department of Public Safety offered a few details about the event. The alert also notes, “additional arrests related to this case are expected.”
Original post, 12:14 p.m. In a flurry of police activity that included multiple Department of Public Safety and Metropolitan Police Department squad cars, undercover DPS officers, and one MPD helicopter providing aerial support, two individuals suspected of burglarizing St. Mary’s were arrested in Burleith late last night.
The successful night for DPS and MPD comes after a spate of burglaries and other crimes in the area. According to University spokesperson Stacy Kerr, last night’s incident began when members of DPS’s Community Action Team, who were a part of increased security measures after multiple burglaries at the Medical Center, witnessed unknown individuals leaving St. Mary’s carrying computer equipment and boxes. The DPS officers were plain-clothed and monitoring the north end of campus in unmarked vehicles.
At this point, the undercover officers contacted MPD and followed the suspects to a large SUV parked on 37th Street, just north of Reservoir Road. One suspect was arrested there at 11:07 p.m.
DPS and MPD worked together to canvas the neighborhood to locate other suspects. One resident of Burleith tweeted shortly after the first suspect was arrested that DPS was looking for two men suspected of burglarizing St. Mary’s. Around this time, MPD also dispatched a helicopter with a searchlight to assist the search for suspects.
Within the next hour, at 38th and T Streets NW, another suspect (pictured above) was apprehended by reimbursable detail officers from MPD that the University pays to assist neighborhood patrols. According to an undergraduate who lives nearby, the apprehending officer tackled the suspect to the ground. This suspect was held on the curb on T Street for over an hour, during which time police searched a bag they found with the suspect and discovered a large roll of duct tape among other items.
DPS continues to work with MPD on this ongoing investigation. Several computers and other equipment were recovered by police during the incident.
Photo: Jackson Perry