RAVENNA, Ohio (WKBN) — Authorities say a trio of alleged heroin addicts from East Palestine are behind a slew of burglaries in multiple counties in both Ohio and Pennsylvania.
Heather Boots and Dan Boots, along with Juston Buskirk, all of East Palestine, are in the Portage County Jail on $250,000 bond. Police said they were able to identify them thanks to a security camera at a home they allegedly broke into in Deerfield last month.
“We took still photographs from that and distributed it across northeast Ohio to surrounding law enforcement agencies to see if anybody was familiar with them or if they had any cases that were similar in nature,” said Lt. Gergory Johnson, detective bureau chief for the Portage County Sheriff’s Office.
As it turned out, the Columbiana County Sheriff’s department was familiar with the three and provided Portage County investigators with names. Johnson said those names were connected to several of the stolen items sold at area pawn shops in Trumbull County.
“We had found some of the items were not related to anything we had missing, but we did put that information out to all surrounding agencies that we were looking at these people and here are some of the items that we found that were pawned,” said Johnson said.
Investigators believe the three broke into several homes across the area during the day when no one was home and then pawned the items for cash to buy drugs.
Portage County sheriff deputies said the three are homeless. The suspects were caught at the Cottage Inn on Route 422 in Niles on Friday after police received a tip.
Dan Boots and Heather Boots are cooperating with police.