PELHAM, NH (CBS) – Two men in a Manchester, New Hampshire jail are accused of breaking into nearly two dozen homes, and officers say there could be more charges ahead.
“Thirty-five burglaries in a six week period is unprecedented and so we realized that we all needed to get together and work together to stop these crimes from occurring,” said Pelham Police Department Lt. Brian McCarthy. “Six or ten heads are better than two.”
The burglaries occurred in Pelham, Hudson, Windham, Sandown, Dracut, Tyngsborough and Danville. Working together, Detectives were able to connect a case in Dracut to 29-year-old Matthew Szczechura and obtain a warrant for his arrest.
Officers were tracking him Monday. Around five that evening, they pulled over Szczechura and 26-year-old Jeffrey Lavoie on Mammoth Road in Pelham. “The suspects were in the Windham-Pelham area on the town line and they were canvassing neighborhoods on the Windham side and the Pelham side,” Lt. McCarthy said. The truck the two were driving was impounded. Officers hope to execute a search warrant on the vehicle as early as Wednesday.
Lt. McCarthy says the two were targeting things they could get away with easily. “Laptops.. jewelry.. money coins… change items that they can carry in their pockets,” he said. Through cooperation with area pawn shops, police were able to connect the dots.
Homeowners in the neighborhoods where some of the burglaries happened are relieved. “We just heard that people weren’t home and people broke in and took things,” Julie Dallaire said. “I wrote on the board for my family members please remember to lock your car for the night. They know people tend to keep things and just go right to that and out they go,” she said.
Lt. McCarthy says there could be more arrests, but he feels confident in the combined police effort that led to these two arrests. In all the cases, no one was home but officers wanted to stop the burglaries before someone got hurt. “This was a fantastic investigation as far as the efforts of the detectives on all the departments working together,” he said. “This was a collaborate effort between the Pelham detectives, Tyngsborough, Dracut , Hudson and Nashua.”