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KDH police arrest teen after rash of car break-ins, theft from donation box

A 17-year-old boy was arrested after Kill Devil Hills police say he broke into cars and led officers on a foot chase early Friday morning. After his arrest, police discovered the same suspect stole from a Children’s Miracle Network donation box, authorities said in a news release.

The incident began at 4:24 a.m. when a resident in the 1100 block of North Virginia Dare Trail heard the noise of car doors being opened in their driveway, town police said. The resident observed a male in a skull-face mask entering vehicles parked in the driveway, called 911 and confronted the suspect, who fled on a bike.

A Kill Devil Hills officer responding to the 911 call spotted the suspect few minutes later, town police Capt.J.C. Towler, Jr. said in a news release.

The suspect ditched his bicycle and fled on foot into the neighborhoods.

Officers from Dare County Sheriff’s Office, Nags Head Police Department and Kitty Hawk Police Department converged on the area and helped establish a perimeter. Coincidentally, the suspect was again spotted running through the neighborhood by the original 911 caller. The caller helped direct police to the teen, who was then arrested.

The pursuit and search suspect lasted approximately 30 minutes and covered the area between Tanya Drive and Landing Drive, Towler said.

The suspect admitted to attempting to enter more than two dozen cars and was successful in gaining entry to seven unlocked vehicles. Approximately $200 in cash was recovered.

Later in the morning, employees at the Kill Devil Hills Dairy Queen discovered the Children’s Miracle Network donation box at their store had been broken into. Video from the store’s security cameras revealed that the suspect in this incident was the same as the teen from the vehicle breaking and entering events.

The suspect was placed under bond at the Dare County Detention Center. In North Carolina, persons over the age of 16 can be charged as an adult for criminal offenses; however, they are still considered a minor until the age of 18. Therefore, information about the suspect, including a photo, is not being released, police said.

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