4 charged with burglarizing vet’s home
KINGSBURY –Three men and a teenage boy have been arrested and charged with burglarizing and vandalizing the home of 72-year-old Vietnam veteran in Kingsbury last month, and public tips are being credited with the arrests.
The La Porte County Sheriff’s Department announced charges against the four on Friday.
• Ethan Binversie, 19, of La Porte, is charged with felony burglary, misdemeanor criminal mischief and misdemeanor trespassing.
• Bailey Gervais, 19, of La Porte, is charged with felony burglary and misdemeanor trespassing.
• Tyler Jaeger, 22, of Michigan City, is charged with felony burglary, felony theft, felony contributing to the delinquency of a minor, misdemeanor trespassing and misdemeanor criminal mischief.
• A 16-year-old boy is charged with felony burglary, felony theft, misdemeanor trespassing and misdemeanor criminal mischief.
All three men are being held on $20,000 bonds at the La Porte County Jail, while the teen is being held in the La Porte County Juvenile Services Center, police said.
The sheriff’s department announced last month that the crimes, committed on separate occasions, occurred sometime between July 14 and 18, when the homeowner was in St. Louis visiting family.
According to the sheriff’s department, multiple people operating different vehicles committed the crimes at the residence on 3rd Line Road in the Kingsbury Industrial Park. Some of the intruders may have returned to the home multiple times.
Police said guns and the homeowner’s prescription PTSD medicine were stolen.
Large amounts of scrap metal were also stolen from the property, which was also vandalized, Capt. Derek Allen said. The vandalism included the shattering of several windows of one vehicle and using a tractor on the property to flip another vehicle over.
Sheriff John Boyd said one gun was recovered and three remain unaccounted for.
The public was directly responsible for the arrests, he said.
“For the second consecutive week, a serious and very high-profile case was resolved with assistance from the public,” said Boyd, who was also referring to a hit-and-run crash that injured a jogger in July in La Porte.
“Surveillance video was quickly located from a nearby business during the initial stages of the investigation that captured the images of potential suspects and their vehicles, and when a plea was made to the public for assistance in resolving this crime, tips began to come in.”
Boyd said a good relationship with the public helps the department fight crime.
“The trust and partnership that the La Porte County Sheriff’s Office has with the public was instrumental in the quick resolution of this case, as the public was not at all reluctant to provide tips. We cannot thank the public enough for their trust, support and involvement.”
He also credited lead investigator James Lear, Capt. Patrick Cicero and Detective Aaron Banic, who collected evidence, followed-up on leads, performed area canvasses, conducted interviews, and captured and charged the suspects.
“We are very proud of their diligence and attention to detail in cracking the case,” he said.