TROMMALD—Five people were arrested following a report of a burglary at 2:13 p.m. Friday at a home in Trommald.
The Crow Wing County Sheriff's Office arrested Charles Alvin Weber, 37, for felony second-degree burglary; Nichole Evelyn Petersen, 31, for felony fifth-degree possession of a controlled substance; and a 32-year-old man, a 36-year-old man and a 35-year-old man were booked in Crow Wing County Jail for violating conditions of their probation.
Weber and Petersen both appeared Tuesday in Crow Wing County District Court in Brainerd, where they were charged with the counts they were arrested for. The other three have not yet been formerly charged.
According to the probable cause document filed against Weber, the caller reported someone broke into a detached garage on his property on the 19000 block of Hiller Lane and stole several items.
Upon arrival at the home, deputies met with the caller in the driveway. He told deputies he saw tire tracks and shoe prints in the snow leading up the driveway to his home and more shoe prints around the outside and into the building. Deputies observed an area where a vehicle appeared to have backed into a spot off of the driveway and two occupants exited the vehicle.
One of the deputies saw two sets of separate shoe prints on the south, west and north sides of the home. One of the shoe prints appeared to be the same print the deputy observed at an earlier burglary in Aitkin. During this incident, two suspects who appeared to be accompanied by a large dog walked off of the frozen lake and looked in the windows of a home before breaking into a detached garage by cutting a padlock with a pair of bolt cutters and forcing open the deadbolted door, the complaint stated.
The shoe prints continued around the west side of the building and up to a service door, used as the main entry to the building, secured by a large padlock. The padlock appeared to have been pried off the latch. The latch was damaged and no lock was located on, in or around the building, and the shoe prints continued into the building. Deputies located and photographed several shoe prints in the building with good tread detail. While searching the building for shoe prints and other evidence, one of the deputies learned the padlock securing the overhead door on the south end of the building was cut and the lock was on the floor nearby.
Several items were believed to have been taken, including a Lincoln Mig wire feed welder and a 12,000-pound electric winch.
Deputies identified Weber as a suspect in the burglary. A deputy located a vehicle with tires matching the tracks at the scene at a home on Bluebird Avenue in Crow Wing County. Footprints from the vehicle to the home matched the footprints at the burglary as well. At the home, the deputy located the 32-year-old male suspect, who admitted to being the owner of the vehicle and the person who drove it. He has not yet been charged.
Deputies learned Weber, who had a felony warrant, was inside the home. Deputies entered the home and located Weber and Petersen inside separate bedrooms in the home. They took them into custody and obtained a search warrant to search the home.
In executing the search warrant, deputies learned the basement bedroom at the home was identified as Weber's and another woman's bedroom. Multiple items were located in the shared bedroom that were taken from the caller's garage, including the winch and the welder valued at more than $1,000.
An investigator also found a pistol with the serial number removed in the bedroom. Multiple burglary tools—including bolt cutters, a pry bar and a lock pick set—were located in their bedroom. A glass pipe consistent with devices used to smoke methamphetamine was also located in the bedroom.
Weber is a convicted felon and is prohibited from possessing firearms, the complaint stated. Weber's shoe tread matched the footprints at the burglary scene as well. Weber also had a key for the suspect vehicle in his possession when he was taken into custody.
Petersen was convicted for fifth-degree possession of a controlled substance in 2016, the complaint stated. Authorities located a syringe testing positive for methamphetamine and a tin of pills identified as Gabapentin, a medication used to prevent and control seizures and to alleviate nerve pain.