Suspect in Break and Enter spree arrested and $84K stolen Jeep recovered
Since the end of December 2019, Kelowna RCMP have been investigating a rash of break and enters and theft of vehicles in the Kelowna area.
Investigation into these incidents lead police to identify three individuals believed to be responsible.
On the evening of January 8th, 2020, Kelowna RCMP Frontline officers responded to a report of a break and enter in progress at a dealership on Enterprise Way.
Officers responded immediately to the area and despite extensive patrols, the suspect was not located.
Video surveillance showed a male suspect who broke a window and took keys to multiple vehicles in the lot, leaving with a new Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT valued at over $84,000.
On the evening of January 9th, 2020, Kelowna Street Enforcement Unit located the stolen Jeep at a local hotel.
Officers attempted to stop the Jeep, however it fled the scene after colliding with a police vehicle.
Subsequently, a male and female associated to the driver of the Jeep were located and arrested at the hotel.
The investigation lead to the recovery of some of vehicle dealership keys previously stolen.
On January 15th, 2020 just before 3:00 p.m., Kelowna RCMP frontline officers, Police Dog Services, the Community Safety Unit and the Street Enforcement Unit responded to a sighting of the stolen Jeep on Enterprise Way.
Officers responded immediately to the area and located the stolen Jeep abandoned in a parking lot on Hardy St.
A male attempted to flee from police on foot but was arrested without incident after a short foot pursuit.
Following his arrest, officers located evidence associated to the male that was related to ongoing commercial break and enter investigations in Kelowna.
“This investigation illustrates the response Kelowna RCMP will provide to the community in order to stop an ongoing crime and their devotion to catching suspects involved in criminal offences.” States Cpl. Guillaume Tanguay of the Kelowna Street Enforcement Unit. “Our officers put every effort forward to reduce crime in the community and the arrest of this suspect will have a significant impact in the current wave of property crimes in the Kelowna area.”
On January 16th, 2020 The BC Prosecution Service approved 9 criminal charges against Thomas Aaron Udell, a 33-year-old Kelowna man. The charges include:
- Possession of property obtained by crime over $5000 contrary to Section 355(a) of the Criminal Code
- Possession of property obtained by crime under $5000 contrary to Section 355(b) of the Criminal Code
- Flight from police contrary to Section 320.17 of the Criminal Code
- Assault Peace Officer with a weapon contrary to Section 270.01(1)(a) of the Criminal Code
- Break and enter and commit indictable offence contrary to Section 348(1)(b) of the Criminal Code
- Disguising face with intent to commit offence contrary to Section 351(2) of the Criminal Code
- Wilfully resisting or obstructing a peace officer contrary to Section 129(a) of the Criminal Code
- Possession of a Controlled Substance contrary to Section 4(1) of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act
- Breach of Undertaking contrary to Section 145(4)(a) of the Criminal Code
Udell remains in custody and the investigation remains ongoing at this time.