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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Wilmington Police and New Hanover County deputies say three arrests have solved dozens of crimes. The two agencies say they also found thousands of dollars worth of stolen items.

“There was a plethora of different items from change to electronics, stolen weapons, speakers, sunglasses, iPods, just a lot of everything you would find in cars,” Sheriff’s spokesman Cpl. Jerry Brewer said.

Deputies and police say three men arrested earlier this month stole the items from cars in the city and county.

“Through discussions from the suspects, it seems to be about 100 vehicles that they state were broken into,” WPD Det. Daniel Searle-Spratt said.

Alexander Gongotes, Christopher Madry and Cameron Strauss face multiple counts of breaking and entering. Investigators say they found the bounty after searching Strauss’s home on Cherokee Trail.

“He did have some secret compartments that had stolen goods in it,” Brewer said. “Some paneling that was removed to hide specific items.”

Brewer says the thieves would head out around 2 or 3 a.m. and break into cars parked in residential areas. He says they would go from house to house, but only steal from cars that were unlocked.

“All of the evidence that we found in the house, we were able to use that and link it back to approximately 50 cases in the county,” Brewer said.

Police and deputies encourage all victims of B&E’s to report the thefts, but they say it could all be prevented.

“People really need to lock their vehicles up and keep their belongings under lock and key,” Det. Searle-Spratt said.

Simple advice to help solve a big problem.

Brewer says there are 40 open breaking and entering to houses cases in the Gordon Road area. He says those have all happened during the day.

Comment on this Story

  • Guestaround

    Kudos to law enforcement who was patrolling around that night and caught these thieves. They hit us twice within three months – took mail from the neighborhood mailboxes – ripped open all the Christmas cards looking for money I guess. I don’t lock my car in my driveway as I have nothing of value in it, but they certainly rifled through everything looking for something. They took lots of stuff from other cars in the neighborhood. Hubby sure did wish he could have been the one to catch them. Had a 9 iron with their name on it.

  • Guest

    Well by the sound of the money in mail scheme these boys are a little more sophisticated white collar mentality than the crackhead thief who was breaking in and stealing cigarettes in our neighborhood.

  • Commonsensenotcommontoday

    They’ll be out ripping people off again in no time.

    Hmmmm….maybe some aspects of Sharia law aren’t all that bad…

    “Are you left-handed or right-handed? (THWAAAKKKKKKK!) You are left-handed now.”

  • Guest7969

    I love my Constitution…but SOMETIMES…I wonder if a little Sharia would stop people like this who is out…RIGHT ABOUT….NOW…and will be doing all this again probably…..this afternoon.

  • Guest461

    But with one hand comes one foot as well, their choice of right or left. It does wonders for their future mobility with crime activity.

  • Guest must be smart

    how about hammer on knuckles and cut some fingers. make an example of them to make others think twice, and hit them with the book and then charge them for everything possible.

  • Guest

    Please publish a written list and let us know what items and if it matches the ones listed on the sheriffs reports for our neighborhoods next to the Carolina Beach bridge. We were pretty sure it was a landscaping employee.

  • Guestaround

    Oh, I’m sure it’s the same group, they stole a carton of cigarettes as well each time they paid us a visit.

  • Guest

    Their parents must be proud… but wait… I could see them now, lying on the sofa, in a drunkin stupor…I guess I might be wrong, most likely they couldn’t care less…

  • Kira

    Most likely you are just an arrogant SOB that assumes they know everyone’s life situation based on one feature they saw on the news. In all honesty, you must be so proud of your arrogance to judge someone’s parents who you haven’t even met. Did it ever cross your single minded brain that maybe, just maybe, they are completely crushed by this? I guess not considering your vast knowledge on the situation. Nothing is black and white, buddy, and let me tell you that if you see everything this way your life must be really pathetic. Sounds like to me you haven’t met his parents so for you to go around with your nose up in the air like you know all the answers is really ignorant. And guess what? You are wrong.

  • char

    in regards to arrondale kirkwood subdivision, i know two names of kids they have stolen that are breaking into cars and have been for some time. they are even breaking into cars at murray middle school and ashley high after school when all activities are going on. they are going around bragging about all the items and money they have stolen. and what sucks is the one little wanna be thugs father is a new hanover county sherrif. and the little jerk gets out of everything.

  • Wrightsville

    I was searching around online because this happened to my boyfriend last weekend but they didn’t take anything, so we didn’t call the police. The only thing of value in the car was change. They didn’t even take that. I then was speaking with someone I know that lives in a neighborhood off of Murrayville Rd. The same exact thing happened to them before us. However, I am unclear of what date this happened to them. So, someone is still out there doing this as of April 15th 2012.


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