A Milwaukee man is facing more than 70 years in prison after he allegedly broke into several Caledonia businesses over the 4th of July weekend.
Daniel Chenoweth, 38, was charged Wednesday in Racine County Circuit Court with the following offenses:
- Four felony counts of burglary of a building
- Two felony counts of criminal damage to property
- One felony count of theft of moveable property
- Two misdemeanor counts each of criminal damage to property and theft
- One misdemeanor count each of attempted entry into a locked coin box, obstruction, possession of drug paraphernalia, and marijuana possession.
If convicted, he faces up to 72 years in prison and/or up to $131,500 in fines.
According to the criminal complaint, when police caught Chenoweth on a purple bicycle using a rock to try to break open a cash drawer at Oh! Dennis restaurant, he tried to flee the scene but was apprehended. Along his flight path, officers found his bike and backpack containing multiple laptops, tablets, cameras, and a small quantity of marijuana plus a pipe. Two additional laptops were found inside a laptop bag.
During questioning, Chenoweth admitted he broke into four Caledonia businesses on Douglas Avenue and the U.S. Post Office on 4-Mile Road beginning the evening of July 1 and ending at about 2 a.m. on July 2 when he was arrested, the complaint continues.
The 5 Caledonia locations affected
Discovery Auto Sales, 4523 Douglas Ave., Caledonia
The owner found a broken window and damage totaling more than $10,000. Soap and anti-freeze were poured over computers, several of which were opened and damaged beyond repair. Sinks in restrooms and the shop had been clogged and were overflowing, and a fire extinguisher was discharged. The dealership’s security camera hard drive was in a bucket of radiator fluid. Police located a footprint that matched Chenoweth’s and a hammer as well.
U.S. Post Office, 2635 4 Mile Road, Caledonia
An employee reported at about midnight on July 2 that several fleet vehicles had been damaged. Another government car had a smashed window and had been rummaged through.
Wiscon Products, 5022 Douglas Ave., Caledonia
Someone who had a boat parked on the property noticed a broken window and called the police. The person also reported their small, white anchor was stolen from the boat.
The white anchor was used to smash the window. Four laptops, two tablets – an iPad and an Android device – were taken from the premises. Total damages are estimated at around $15,000.
RestoreMore Inc., 5757 Douglas Ave., Caledonia
Access to the building was through a window where an air conditioner had been pushed inside. Nothing was stolen, but video surveillance shows the perpetrator dressed in the same clothes as Chenoweth when he was apprehended.
Oh! Dennis, 4301 Douglas Ave., Caledonia
After taking Chenoweth into custody, they found the broken cash drawer on the ground where he dropped it as well as several other cash drawers taken from registers. Chenoweth gained access to the building by breaking a window with a rim he took from a snowplow parked at a neighboring business.
Chenoweth was assigned a $5,000 cash bond and ordered to stay away from the businesses listed in the criminal complaint. He will next be in court on July 13 for his preliminary hearing.
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