MONTGOVERY COUNTY — A Little Falls man has been charged with three felonies and several misdemeanors after allegedly breaking into three western Montgomery County establishments last weekend.
John J. Lemche, III, 23, was arrested Thursday following an investigation by the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Department and state police.
Lemche is accused of breaking into the Parkside Drive-In and Lombardo’s Pizzeria Plus in the town of St. Johnsville and an attempted burglary of the Ayres Memorial Animal Shelter in the town of Root on July 5.
The public also provided tips that led to Lemche’s arrest. According to a Montgomery County Sheriff’s Department press release, burglaries of a similar nature had occurred in neighboring Herkimer County.
In the St. Johnsville burglaries, cash registers were stolen from both restaurants. The burglar broke a window and door to get inside, police said. The cash registers each contained less than $5, and were subsequently discovered by citizens discarded separately on local country roads, police said.
Parkside Drive-In was forced to remain closed Monday, as it was without a point of sale system following Sunday’s break-in.
Montgomery County Sheriff Jeffery T. Smith said it is believed Lemche fled the Ayres Memorial Animal Shelter before he was able to steal anything because a dog inside the facility scared him away.
Video footage of Lemche was obtained from the Parkside Drive-In and Ayres Memorial Animal Shelter break-ins, police said.
Lemche was charged with two counts of third-degree burglary and one count of third-degree attempted burglary, felonies; two counts of petty larceny and two counts of fourth-degree criminal mischief.
Following arraignment, Lemche was turned over to the Herkimer County Correctional Facility where he is now being held on a parole violation. He is scheduled to re-appear in St. Johnsville and Root town courts at a later date.