Sounds like this guy had a nice sized collection
Probe nets 80 stolen firearms, five arrests
By Frank Wiget
Post-Tribune staff writer
VALPARAISO – The numbers are already staggering and the investigation isn’t over.
Porter County Sheriff’s police have recovered about 80 of 100 handguns, shotguns, and rifles taken in a Boone Grove burglary last month.
They also have made five arrests in connection with about 40 burglaries in south Porter County.
The detective work isn’t done. Detective Capt. Mike Jenkins said during a news conference Monday morning at the Sheriff’s Department.
So far, police have arrested 20-year old Brandon Chaffer of Lake Eliza and four boys ranging in age from 15 to 17 from the same area.
Jenkins said the investigation is expected to last at least two or three months or longer and the target will now be adults.
Losses at the Dan Pivarnik residence in the Boone Grove area on July 18 were estimated at $150,000 to $175,000, Jenkins said. Most of that was a gun collection including a variety of semiautomatic pistols, revolvers, rifles, and shotguns, some antiques going back several generations.
Jenkins said all told there could have been losses of more than $250,000 during the lengthy crime spree.
Pivarnik was thankful about 80 of the firearms have been recovered and returned to him and his children. They had been in his basement. Now they are in gun safes, with many distributed to his three sons, he said after three press conference. “We also have installed burglar alarms.”
Pivarnik, a son of the late Alfred Pivarnik, a former state Supreme Court justice, said his greatest concern was those firearms getting in the hands of criminals. He credited the efforts of couty detectives and of state Conservation officer Bob Cauffman in recovering most of the guns and other items, including two computers and jewelry.
Some of the burglary suspects may have only been 11 or 12 years old when they started, Jenkins said. He said the crime wave covers at least a 4 to 5 year period, possibly longer.
Jenkins said county Detectives Larry Sheets, Jeff Biggs, and David Reynolds II have worked around the clock, assisted by Detectives Jerry Kratowicz, Bill Young, and Andy Hrivnak, along with Cauffman and agents from the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.
Porter County police Chief Deputy David Lain said the greatest concern was recovering the guns that could be used by criminals. Man of the burglaries were in the Lake Eliza area, he said.
The investigation so far has extended south of U.S. 30 through Lake Eliza and Boone Grove and between Kouts and Hebron, Jenkins said.
Porter County Chief Deputy Prosecutor Brian Gensel said just how many charges be filed against Chaffer and the juveniles hasn’t been determined. He said prosecutors will take into account any cooperation of suspects that led to other suspects and recovering of the stolen items.
He said all suspects can expect to face prosecution.
Lain said Porter Township Trustee Bob Wichlinski has been working to improve living conditions in the Lake Eliza area, working with residents and police. The crackdown in addition to crime has included removal of junk cars.
Though not related to the burglary ring recently broken up by county police, county officers had three people in custody Friday in connection with the Thursday break-in in the 1100 block of North County road 475E in Jackson Township.
Arrested with about $11,000 in loot, including two shotguns and two rifles, computer and camera equipment were Steven Lynn, 28, of Chesterton, and Mark A. Ruthrauff, 43, of Valparaiso, both charged with burglary. Also arrested was Kathleen Kupiec, 32, of Lake Station on a charge of possession of stolen property.
Homeowners confronted the suspects with several county officers joined by a state conservation officer and off-duty LaPorte County deputy sheriff.
Reporter Frank Wiget can be reached at 477-6012 or firstname.lastname@example.org
I can't tell. That link brings up a completely blank page. Nothing in the page source either.
Oh, and I tried searching the archives and nothing came up??