Two nabbed in Canton burglary

August 28, 2014
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Louis R. Phillips
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Ronald Lee Ringer

Two Washington men are in jail after a Washington police officer stopped them early Thursday, not long after they allegedly broke into a business on Jefferson Avenue in Canton Township.

Arrested were Ronald Lee Ringer, 38, of 259 Bench Ave., Canton, and Louis R. Phillips Jr., 37, of 205 Roosevelt St., North Franklin Township.

State police received a report just before 1 a.m. of an alarm sounding at Interstate Contractor Supply, 1655 Jefferson. Troopers discovered a smashed door window. A representative of the company arrived and told police various Dewalt tools, valued at about $4,000, were stolen.

There was surveillance video of one of the suspects, who wore a black Pittsburgh Steelers Troy Polamalu jersey. He was a white, tall, thin man with a bald head. In the video, the suspect removes several boxes of tools from the store and places them outside.

City police Cpl. Joshua Rush also viewed the video and reported several suspect vehicles seen in the area of similar crimes, including a black Jeep Cherokee.

About 2 a.m., Rush stopped a black Jeep Cherokee going east on Jefferson. The passenger, Phillips, was wearing a Polamalu jersey. Ringer was driving the truck.

Ringer gave police a statement, reportedly admitting to driving his vehicle and taking Phillips to Interstate Contractor Supply. Ringer told police Phillips used a metal bar to break the window and enter the building. Phillips then put tools in Ringer’s vehicle.

Ringer told police he then drove to the Taylorstown exit of Interstate 70, where they met a man who purchased the tools.

They then drove to the city’s West End, where Ringer said they purchased drugs using the money they got for selling the tools.

Trooper Sarah Teagarden, who filed the charges against the pair, said she will obtain a search warrant for Ringer’s vehicle. Two other people in the Jeep were questioned and released.

Both were arraigned before District Judge David Mark on charges of burglary, criminal trespass, theft and conspiracy. They were placed in Washington County jail on $25,000 bond.

A preliminary hearing is set for Sept. 10 before Mark.

Kathie O. Warco has covered the police beat and transportation for the Observer-Reporter for more than 25 years. She graduated from Duquesne University with a degree in journalism.

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