Lowell man accused of store break-in

Marietta Police this week arrested a suspect who allegedly broke into Tractor Supply Company through the building’s roof in 2012, and more charges and arrests could be coming.

Kristoffer D. Cline, 38, of 14990 State Route 60, Lowell, was taken into custody without incident Tuesday at his home, charged with fifth-degree felony breaking and entering, according to Marietta Police Capt. Jeff Waite.

The charge comes from a Jan. 13, 2012, incident in which police responded to a motion-detection alarm in the front office of Tractor Supply at 315 Gross St. in the Frontier Shopping Center. Officers arriving at the scene found the front door busted out, according to an affidavit of facts filed with Marietta Municipal Court.

Investigation revealed suspects had cut a pair of holes in the roof, apparently with an ax, police said in 2012. At least one of the individuals apparently entered through a hole above the office and landed on a table, setting off the alarm, the affidavit says. The suspect or suspects then fled through the front door by breaking it with a sledge.

The affidavit notes there were multiple breaking and enterings reported between December 2011 and August 2012 in Washington, Athens, Guernsey and Noble counties in which businesses were entered through the roof or a smashed door.

“They’re looking into his (Cline’s) possible involvement in the other B&E’s,” Waite said.

Police were led to Cline recently after interviewing an individual in September of this year who “provided reliable information to investigators … concerning several area B&E’s in which stolen property was recovered,” the affidavit says. The person said Cline and another man broke into Tractor Supply and then reportedly identified Cline on surveillance video from the store.

Asked if additional arrests could follow Cline’s, Waite said, “that’s very possible.”

Cline was arraigned Wednesday morning and released later in the day from the Washington County Jail after posting a $10,000 bond, according to jail officials. A preliminary hearing is set for 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 6, in municipal court.

A phone number for Cline could not be located, and an attorney was not listed in court records.

Among the agencies investigating crimes that could be related to the one at Tractor Supply are the Washington County Sheriff’s Office and the Beverly Police. Beverly Chief Mark Sams said he was still gathering information but there might be connections to more than one outstanding case in the village.

Sams said the department is always looking to solve cases that have been open for a while, pointing to a break-in at American Legion Post 389 that they will be presenting to prosecutors soon for grand jury consideration.

“That American Legion case we’ve been working on since 2011,” he said.