Pair face charges related to Palatine burglaries

PALATINE — The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Department says two men face burglary and larceny charges after allegedly taking items from vehicles around the town — their second such charges in less than a month.

Anthony J. Hogan, 19, of 247 Spring St., Fort Plain and John J. Lemche III, 22, of 15 Jackson St., Apartment #34, Little Falls were both charged with third-degree burglary, a felony, and petit larceny, a misdemeanor.

Deputies said Wednesday that the sheriff’s office had numerous complaints of property larcenies out of vehicles and two burglaries in the town that occurred late Tuesday night into early Wednesday morning.

Montgomery County Sheriff Jeff Smith said items were stolen from about half a dozen vehicles, along with thefts from one business and one privately-owned residence.

According to the release, after police spoke with the victims, it was determined that an undisclosed amount of cash, gift cards, winning lottery tickets, valuable antiques and business-related items were among

the items reported taken.

One of the suspects attempted to redeem a stolen gift card at a local business where “quick thinking employees” recognized the gift card as stolen and told the suspect there was no money on the card. The employees asked if they should throw the gift card away and as soon as the suspect left, they contacted the sheriff’s office.

Around 3 p.m. on Wednesday, Montgomery County Sheriff’s Investigator Karla Swartz responded to the business to obtain the stolen gift card and interviewed the employees. Swartz was familiar with Hogan from previous cases and responded to his house located at 7 Clyde St., Fort Plain where Hogan was seen with other subjects. Lemche had exited the residence through the back door and fled the area on foot.

According to the release, Fort Plain Police Chief Ryan Austin, who assisted at Clyde Street, confirmed Lemche had fled on foot.

Lemche was later detained by Austin and sheriff’s deputy Luke Paine at Stewart’s in the village. After detaining Lemche and Hogan, both gave statements admitting to the larcenies and burglaries and turned over evidence.

Hogan and Lemche were arraigned in Town Court where they were remanded to the Montgomery County Correctional Facility in lieu of $25,000 cash bail or $50,000 bail and are to appear to court at a later date.

“There may be more suspects, more arrests, pending charges,” Smith said.

Both men were also charged earlier this month on Jan. 2 for the alleged burglary of the H.C. Smith Benefit Club in November.

The two allegedly broke several of the windows and doors in order to gain entry into the building on Nov. 22 and had caused significant damage in and outside of the building. The cash register had been ripped from its location and taken with them.

The register was later found smashed on the side of the road of Kennedy Road, St. Johnsville. Police said the pair allegedly took over $2,000 worth of alcohol during the burglary.

By Kerry Minor

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