ST. GEORGE – A St. George man has been charged with three felonies after a family that had been out of town for three weeks returned home Sunday to find their home broken into and several items missing – including a recently installed kitchen sink.
Jose Ramos, 43, was booked into the Washington County Purgatory Correctional Facility on charges of criminal mischief, theft and burglary. He is scheduled to appear Tuesday in 5th District Court before Judge Eric Ludlow.
According to the arrest document, the family reported someone had been in their home and “tore everything apart and stole a lot of property.” Items kept in a shed behind the home had also been stolen. Responding officers also noted extensive damage to vehicles, which had items stolen from them as well.
“Two of the vehicles in the driveway had all four tires and rims stolen and the vehicles were resting on blocks,” the arrest document states. “One of the vehicles had the radio and the console including the speedometer removed.”
Officers also found a partial shoe print left in the dust on one of the vehicles’ floor mats.
Inside the home, pictures that had been on the wall had been taken down and left on the floor. Vents, towel racks and other items attached to the wall had also been ripped off and were missing.
Among other missing items were a recently installed kitchen sink and the garbage disposal that had been attached to it.
“A window in the master bedroom was broken, allowing the suspect access to the residence,” the arrest report states.
The cost of the stolen property and damage to the home and vehicles was estimated to be over $5,000.
Family members who were asking around the neighborhood about the burglary noticed a couple of nightstands in a neighbor’s carport that resembled ones taken from their home.
St. George Police officers went to the home and made contact with a woman who said Ramos was the one who had acquired the items.
“(The woman) allowed officers into their residence and surrounding yard,” the officer wrote in the arrest document. “A large portion of the missing items were located inside the residence, behind a shed in the backyard and inside the shed. This included the missing kitchen sink.”
The woman told officers that Ramos has been showing up with the items over the last few weeks.
When interviewed by police, Ramos’ story about how he acquired the items changed several times.
“Jose initially advised he purchased the property from a friend,” the officer wrote. Ramos then said he bought the items off the street, at a yard sale and then from a man in the parking lot of the Smith’s grocery store.
“Jose’s statements kept changing and did not add up.”
Ramos offered to take the officers to home of the person he said he bought the items from, but when taken there, he said he didn’t know where the man lived.
During the investigation, officers matched the shoes Ramos was wearing to the partial shoe print found in one of the cars. That, along was inconsistent statements to police and the majority of the missing items being located at his residence, resulted in him being taken into custody.
Persons arrested or charged are presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law or as otherwise decided by a trier-of-fact.
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