Recently, the area has had a few home burglaries and attempted burglaries and police are warning residents to be alert and cautious.
On Oct. 1, an attempted burglary was reported on Shenipsit Lake Road in Tolland around noon. Later that day, an attempted burglary was reported on Gem Drive in Ellington. On Oct. 5, a house on Ertel Drive in Vernon was broken into. On Oct. 6, Coventry Police received a call a little after 10 a.m. for a burglary in progress into a barn on Cedar Swamp Road.
According to Coventry Police Chief Mark Palmer, in Coventry, the suspect was located by an individual who arrived at the barn that he used for storage. The suspect had his vehicle inside the barn and was in the process of stealing items. When confronted, Paul Carter III, 21, of 2770 Boston Turnpike in Coventry, tried to flee in his car and struck the victim's truck.
Carter then jumped in the victim’s truck and started to drive out of the barn. The victim, believing his truck was being stolen, jumped into his truck and subdued Carter. Carter then fled the area on foot. He was later located near his residence and arrested without incident.
He was charged with third-degree burglary, sixth-degree larceny, first-degree reckless endangerment, interfering with an officer, and criminal attempt to commit larceny.
Carter was transported to Windham Hospital for treatment of a head injury sustained during the burglary while the victim was preventing him from stealing his truck.
The continuing investigation has led to connecting Carter to other recent burglaries and larcenies in Coventry. Warrants are being applied for in these cases.
Carter’s bond was set at $200,000 and he was presented in court for arraignment on Tuesday.
According to Vernon Police Department Lt. John Kelley, in the Vernon case, a neighbor reported suspicious activity at the house that was broken into. The department did an extensive search with its K-9 unit and the state police assisted.
"Unfortunately we did not locate the suspect," he said. "The case is still under investigation."
The Gem Drive incident is also still under investigation.
Ellington Resident State Trooper Patrick Sweeney said that although Ellington is a great place to live, it does not mean the town is a safe haven and immune from crime.
"Residents need to take precautions to know that their home, belongings, and vehicles are safe," he said.
One main thing to do is to lock your doors of your house and car when you are gone or in your home asleep. Do not leave valuables visibile in your car when left unattended. If you are going away for an extended period of time, let a neighbor know so they can keep an eye on their home.
Sweeney said that if someone is going around door to door, call the police.
"Any person that is going door to door soliciting has to have a permit issued from this office," he said. "This could be a way to get into a home that is unlocked or to take advantage of the resident in the home."
Sweeney added that if a resident sees something suspicious, they should call the police.
"It helps us tremendously when someone observed something that is able to lead us in the right direction," he said.
These home burglary incidents come on the heels of several car burglaries in the area.