High-end break-and-enter suspects arrested

A provided photo of recovered high-end stolen items

RCMP recovered five firearms as well as a large quantity of jewelry and high-end items

RCMP investigators say charges have been laid against one man and are pending against another in a series of break-and-enters that occurred over the past three months.

With assistance from the Southern Alberta crime reduction unit (CRU), members of the Cochrane CRU were called on to investigate a number of break-and-enters that occurred at rural properties in Rocky View County and Foothills County.

The first of the series of break-and-enters began on August 11th where the homeowner's truck and a large quantity of jewelry was stolen. 

"A few months later, a male – believed to be the accused – purchased a vehicle with a cheque that had been stolen from that residence." said Supt. Rick Jané with the Southern Alberta CRU.

The suspect continued to break into other rural homes:

- Oct. 15 – Rocky View County, large quantity of cash and jewelry taken;
- Oct. 20 – Foothills County, suspect kicked in a garage side door and stole jewelry as well as a safe containing cash;
- Oct. 23 – Rocky View County;
- Nov. 9 – Foothills County; and
- Nov. 15 – Foothills County, suspect pried open a front door and stole a quantity of jewelry.

RCMP received multiple reports of two suspicious males prowling nearby residences in the early morning hours in the same area of the previous break-and-enter. With the help of the home's security footage police arrested and charged Matthew Grouette, 35.

Grouette faces the following charges; 

- Five counts of break-and-enter and theft;
- Possession of stolen property obtained by crime over $5,000;
- Unauthorized possession of a firearm;
- Three counts of a breach of probation; and
- Unsafe storage of a firearm.

Officers executed a search warrant on a home as well as a storage locker in Calgary.

Police recovered:

- More than $200,000 of stolen jewelry;
- Stolen identity documents;
- Stolen credit cards and passports;
- Five firearms and ammunition;
- Watches;
- Designer clothing;
- Designer bags;
- A stolen Ducati motorcycle; and
- A stolen Ford F-150.

Investigators also found a white Audi Q5 and clothing believed to have been used in all of the break-and-enters.

This investigation highlights the importance of video evidence in an investigation, Jané says, as well as co-ordinated efforts by many investigators from multiple detachments.

Cochrane RCMP say another person was arrested in connection with the break-and-enters, but they have not yet been officially charged.

Grouette was released from custody on conditions and will appear in Calgary provincial court on Dec. 8.

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