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Downtown burglary suspect arrested

A man whom local police believe recently moved into the area and began making his living by stealing from local businesses was arrested last week, the Port Orchard Police Department reported.

Scott A. Waterbury, 18, was charged with second-degree burglary in Kitsap County Superior Court after being arrested Thursday morning in connection with a string of burglaries to local businesses in the past month, according to POPD Commander Geoffrey Marti.

“We noticed we had a problem in the last month with commercial burglaries in the city,” said Marti, explaining that most of the victims hit were “small businesses that do not have high-tech alarm systems.”

Marti attributed the arrest to the “really good police work” of officers Beth Deatheridge and Jerry Jensen, who recognized a pattern in the burglaries and surmised who might be responsible.

“The day shift officers were working an unusual amount of burglaries, which had the same type of entry and were at the same type of businesses,” he said, explaining that most of the businesses were near downtown on either Bay Street or Bethel Road.

“It was so abnormal, we thought that somebody had come into this community and was basically living off what they stole from merchants downtown,” Marti said, adding that in most cases the suspect stole petty cash or other accessible money. “Most of the money was used to buy food and drug, so basically (the suspect’s) job was stealing, and it would have been a continuing problem.”

Through what Marti described as a “cooperative effort with the Washington State Patrol and the Department of Corrections, Waterbury was located at his residence on the 1100 block of Arnold Avenue.

Originally placed under arrest for an escape from community custody warrant, according to the probable cause statement filed by the POPD, Waterbury was soon booked under seven counts of second-degree burglary after officers reportedly located several stolen items on his person and in his apartment.

The items included stolen credit cards, a modem, DVD player, digital camera and a projector stolen from South Kitsap High School on March 21.

Also found in the apartment were a cellphone take from the Retsil Veteran’s Home, a modem taken from Julea’s Spa, and money and a key taken from the last reported burglary on April 20 at Springhouse Dolls and Gifts.

Officers also reportedly found a small bag of marijuana and pipes used to smoke both marijuana and methamphetamine.

Waterbury is currently being held in Kitsap County Jail under a no-bail hold for the escape charge, along with $50,000 bail for the charges of burglary and possession of stolen property.

His next court date is May 14.

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