Early morning burglary ends in 12-hour police chase

Published 12:00 am Saturday, June 12, 2010

WATERPROOF — An early morning burglary in southern Tensas Parish ended more than 12 hours later following a chase that involved multiple law enforcement jurisdictions, helicopters and search dogs.

The incident started shortly after 4:30 a.m. Wednesday, when Tensas Parish deputies responded to a burglary alarm at North of the Border, a video poker establishment just north of the Concordia-Tensas line, Tensas Parish Sheriff Ricky Jones said.

“They went through the front door — they pulled it off with a chain,” he said. “Once inside, they took the money out of three of the video poker machines.”

As deputies were responding to the burglary call, a deputy stopped a vehicle with a Texas license plate approximately 15 miles away from the burglarized business on U.S. 65.

“When (the deputy) got it stopped, he started to get out of his vehicle and the (driver) took off again, down a little side road, through a corm field, into a bottom, through another cornfield and into the bottom again,” Jones said. “He got stuck in the bottom, and he abandoned the vehicle.”

While the suspects hid in the fields, the TPSO called for support, and Concordia Parish Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Denis Mulvihill arrived with a chase dog.

The chase continued on foot, crossing U.S. 65 and heading toward Lake Bruin. The chase stalled, however, when the suspects’ trail was lost in yet another corn field.

By then, the Tensas Parish correctional warden had called Angola State Penitentiary to send its chase team. Six men and two bloodhounds were sent from Angola.

At the same time, helicopters from the Adams County Sheriff’s Office and the Louisiana State Police circled the area watching for any movement.

“We had him kind of penned in a long corn field that wasn’t very wide,” Jones said.

“We kept them penned up, and that was important because we didn’t know a whole lot about them.”

“We didn’t know if they were a threat for us or any of the homeowners in the area, so everybody performed admirably and did a good job.”

By 5 p.m., both suspects — John Swinney, 42, of Shreveport and Patrick Green, 42, of Lancaster, Texas — had been captured.

“It all ended well and everybody was safe,” Jones said.

The sheriff said he could not comment on why two men from another state were allegedly burglarizing businesses in Tensas Parish, but said the matter is still under investigation and other arrests may follow.