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Convicted Woodbury motorcycle thief sent to prison

Prison time was ordered last month for a man suspected of stealing two motorcycles in one day in Woodbury.

James Barnett Jr. was sentenced June 27 to 21 months in prison for a felony theft conviction stemming from the case.

Barnett was accused of stealing two motorcycles, each valued at about $10,000 apiece, from neighboring locations in Woodbury.

A criminal complaint states Woodbury police received two reports Aug. 29, 2011, of motorcycle thefts - one occurring in the 1600 block of Century Circle and one from the 1500 block of Parkwood Drive. The locations are about two blocks apart.

Surveillance video was obtained from both locations depicting a man entering underground garages, then leaving on stolen motorcycles. The actual thefts were believed to have occurred two days earlier.

Video from the Century Circle theft showed a person enter the lobby of the building and force his way into a secure door leading to the parking garage. In that case, the thief made off with a 1992 custom Harley Davidson.

The other stolen motorcycle was a 2011 Yamaha Stryker.

Ramsey County investigators developed a suspect, later identified as Barnett, who had been suspected of stealing motorcycles around the east metro. Woodbury investigators reviewed St. Paul's surveillance images and confirmed a match with their suspect.

In September 2011, White Bear Lake police responded to an attempted break-in report at Barnett's brother's residence. Police encountered Barnett at the residence, where they determined that the motorcycles he and others there had arrived on were stolen.

Barnett was given credit for 217 days already served in jail.

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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