Suspect in custody for string of downtown burglaries

Published 12:07 am Wednesday, April 17, 2013

NATCHEZ — A suspect in a recent string of downtown burglaries was in custody Tuesday night after an attempted break-in on North Pearl Street went awry earlier in the day.

Kelvin Abraham Jr., 18, 609 Maple St., was apprehended Monday afternoon by Natchez police officers after a resident inside the house Abraham allegedly was attempting to burglarize spotted the man peeking inside, Natchez police detective Jerry Ford said.

The suspect was looking through a glass window on the back of the North Pearl Street house with a brick in his hand when he spotted the homeowner, Ford said.“He dropped the brick and took off running off the porch and jumped a fence into the neighbor’s yard,” Ford said. “He went up B Street and onto Commerce Street before the officers caught him.

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“He pretty much gave up after we caught up with him.”

The homeowner said she knew something was off when she heard noises coming from the back door, one that is not commonly used.

“Most of the people who come to our house and know us don’t use that door,” said the woman who did not want to be identified. “I got up and moved to the other side of my living room from where I had a straight shot to the backdoor.

“When I looked back there I could see somebody with their face pressed against the window, and then I knew it was not a neighbor or someone I knew.”

The homeowner said Abraham fled her back porch as soon as he realized someone was inside the house.

“When I went outside where he had been, there was a brick laying on my back steps so he was obviously ready to break in,” she said. “I think the movement in the house was what scared him away.”

Ford said investigators and officers were questioning Abraham Tuesday evening to determine if he could be linked to the 12 burglaries in the last three months downtown.

“The pattern of busting the windows with a brick and some of the other things he was doing are all the same in the other burglaries,” Ford said. “We had already gotten some tips in about him as a possible suspect, but we just didn’t have anything concrete to go on at the time.

“Now that we caught him and pretty much caught him in the act, we’re almost sure he’s the one that did the rest of the burglaries.”

Six burglaries had been reported on North Pearl Street since January, four on North Union Street and two on Madison Street.

Police Chief Danny White said the department had increased its presence in those neighborhoods, with officers on foot and in cars patrolling the area.

“We were hitting those areas hard and heavy,” White said. “We put a lot of pressure over there, and it paid off.”

Ford said he anticipated that Abraham would be charged with attempted burglary for the Tuesday incident and possibly all the previous burglaries as well.

“It’s been a main concern for everybody at the police department,” Ford said. “It’s just one of those deals where we were waiting on a lucky break, and it seems like that break came today.”

The burglaries were no match for a close-knit community combined with a high police presence, the homeowner said.

“We feel very comfortable where we live, and we’re all very aware of our surroundings and familiar with our neighbors,” she said. “But we will rest well (now) because so many of our neighbors have been on high alert.”