Burglar nabbed at Tifton ATV dealership - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Burglar nabbed at Tifton ATV dealership

TIFTON (WALB) - A Florida man is in the Tift County Jail tonight after police caught him trying to steal thousands of dollars worth of off-road equipment from a Tifton business.

"It's one of them things as a business owner you always dread to hear that someone has broken into your business and tried to steal from you," said Jay Laycock, owner of Offroad Powersports.

Early Saturday morning, that was exactly the situation. An alarm call sounded at the dealership and Tifton Police officers responded.

"The only thing the officer really noted was the back door to an enclosed trailer was down and that caused him enough to alarm to stick it out and wait for the key holder to arrive," said Tifton Police Detective Lee Dunston.

The instinct paid off because police say inside the dealership was 26-year-old Brandon Altman. The Jacksonville, Florida resident managed to crawl inside - swiping equipment from the showroom. The prize of the heist was a Polaris Ranger RZR which can retail upwards of $16,000.

"It appears he was using the RZR to move that merchandise outside and possibly load it on the trailer and take off with it," Dunston said.

Altman's mistake was tripping a silent alarm. When he raised the rolling door, Dunston said, "He saw that people were coming through the business and tried to escape of foot."

Officer Ken Eaton chased Altman down and arrested him. He's in the Tift County jail facing several charges.

Police have also linked him to a burglary in Pierce County.

"It appears that he is possibly going to face some charges down there in regard to a similar burglary," Dunston said.

With nearly $25,000 dollars worth of merchandise saved by police, Laycock said ,"I'm proud we have a police department that responded quickly. I have to think my employee that let them to catch the guy."

Altman is charged with burglary, possession of burglary tools during the commission of a crime, and obstruction of an officer.

Copyright 2011 WALB.  All rights reserved.   

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