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4 arrested in burglary, robbery

Three people connected with a burglary and robbery on Monte Brady Road last week were arrested Tuesday, along with another man who helped them, the Grays Harbor Sheriff’s Office said.

Chief Criminal Deputy Steve Shumate said a 30-year-old Montesano man was arrested at about 3:30 p.m. at Hidden Valley Mobile Home Park in Montesano, along with his 23-year-old pregnant girlfriend who was present at the time of the crimes. She has since been released pending further investigation. A 23-year-old Montesano man believed to have helped in the burglary was arrested later in the day.

A homeowner in the 100 block of Monte Brady Road outside Montesano interrupted a burglary April 3. He told police he heard noises from the front of his house and armed himself with a .40 caliber pistol. He allegedly found the 30-year-old man inside his house.

“The suspect pleaded with the home owner not to shoot him and then convinced him to come outside and see that he had a pregnant girlfriend,” Shumate said.

The homeowner went outside and saw the woman in the truck, along with the 23-year old man, who he initially thought was a woman.

As the homeowner tried to call 911 on his cell phone, the 30-year-old man allegedly attacked him and wrestled the gun away. The gun went off twice during the struggle, but no one was injured.

The 30-year-old took the gun and fled in a 1989 Mazda pickup truck, which was reported stolen later in the evening.

The investigation has been ongoing since the incident, with assistance from the Grays Harbor County Drug Task Force, Shumate said.

Several informants provided information in the investigation.

“We also had just good detective work,” Shumate said. “We believed there were some issues from the owner of the pickup when he reported it stolen.”

The owner, a 45-year-old Montesano man, had prior contacts with law enforcement and investigators learned he had seen his pickup earlier in the day “yet for some reason delayed reporting it being stolen for a couple hours,” Shumate noted.

They also learned the suspect had borrowed the pickup a few days prior to the alleged theft, Shumate said, “which again the owner failed to mention to us.”

Investigators found out the 30-year-old man had borrowed the pickup from the owner, a friend of his, the day of the burglary and robbery.

The suspects drove around and spotted a house that appeared to be empty, Shumate said.

The 30-year-old man went inside the unlocked front door and came out with a large jar of coins.

The 23-year-old man “actually assisted our main suspect loading the coins — because it was a huge jar of coins — into the bed of the truck,” Shumate said.

When the 30-year-old went back inside, he encountered the home owner. After their getaway, the suspects went to the logging roads off Camp Creek Road and left the pickup truck .They apparently called the owner of the pickup and had him pick them up.

“The owner of the pickup then decided to report his vehicle stolen in an effort to throw off the investigation,” Shumate said.

The gun taken in the robbery was recovered Tuesday night behind a trailer in Hidden Valley Mobile Home Park.

“They put it in a plastic bag and buried it in the backyard of a nearby associate,” Shumate said.

The 30-year-old and 23-year-old were booked into Grays Harbor County Jail on suspicion of first-degree burglary and first-degree robbery. The 23-year-old is also connected with numerous burglaries in the East Montesano and Brady areas last month.

The owner of the truck was booked for rendering criminal assistance with those two crimes.