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Trio accused of stealing $25,000 worth of jewelry

Three men are accused of using a garage code to enter a Woodbury home, breaking into a safe and stealing more than $25,000 worth of jewelry inside it.

The men, 20-year-old Roseville resident Nicholas Derosier, 20-year-old Stillwater resident Arthur Wittebort V and 18-year-old Stillwater man Charles William Acker, were charged with second-degree burglary.

The trio is accused of entering a home in the 600 block of Sutherland Drive, where a friend lived. One of the men had been given the garage door code by the resident, who lives at the home with his mother and father-in-law, who were away in Florida for the winter.

According to a criminal complaint, Acker admitted that he, Derosier and Wittebort entered the home on Jan. 14, where they pried open the metal safe with a screwdriver.

Wittebort admitted to pawning jewelry for the other two at Pawn America and then taking a $1,000 check to a bank, where surveillance footage showed Wittebort and Derosier cashing the check. Derosier, whose criminal history includes three Washington County burglary convictions, denied involvement in the burglary, but admitted to being at the pawn shop and bank with the other suspects.

The resident said he discovered the theft after going into a bedroom to watch television, where he found the safe pried open and jewelry missing. He turned over a list of people to whom he had given the garage door code. Police discovered two people on the list had recently pawned items that matched the descriptions of some of the stolen items.

Wittebort said that “much more jewelry” taken in the burglary had been stashed  under a tree in Oak Park Heights. Those items had been doused in bleach in an attempt to hide fingerprints, Wittebort told investigators.

Police found the jewelry in a bag. The items appeared corroded “due to a chemical, possibly bleach,” the complaint states.

Derosier makes his first court appearance on Wednesday, April 9. Wittenbort has a probable cause hearing set for July 24 and Acker makes his first appearance on April 24.

Mike Longaecker

Mike Longaecker is the regional public safety reporter for RiverTown Multimedia. His coverage area spans St. Croix and Pierce counties. Longaecker served from 2011-2015 as editor of the Woodbury Bulletin. A University of Wisconsin-River Falls graduate, Longaecker previously reported for the Red Wing Republican Eagle and for the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau. You can follow him on Twitter at @Longaecker

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