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Saratoga Sheriff: Clifton Park man arrested in string of home burglaries

Saratoga Sheriff: Clifton Park man arrested in string of home burglaries

Saratoga Sheriff: Clifton Park man arrested in string of home burglaries
Tyler Lester
Photographer: Saratoga County Sheriff's Office (inset), Gazette file photo (background)

CLIFTON PARK - A Clifton Park man has been arrested in a string of more than half dozen burglaries in the town, Saratoga County Sheriff's officials said Wednesday.

Tyler E. Lester, 25, of Foxwood Drive, was arrested early Tuesday while walking on Moe Road at about 5 a.m. after deputies responded to burglary reports in the area, sheriff's officials said.

A deputy in the area spotted Lester while he was walking near the intersection of Grooms Road, Saratoga County Sheriff Michael Zurlo said at a press conference on Wednesday morning. After stopping Lester to speak to him, deputies arrested him.

Lester was ultimately charged with eight counts of second-degree burglary and three counts of second-degree attempted burglary, officials said.

Sheriff's investigators have been looking into the string of burglaries and thefts since they began Oct. 4. The burglaries were reported in residential neighborhoods in the Crescent Road, Moe Road, Lapp Road and Grooms Road areas, officials said.

Residents reported their homes were entered in the overnight hours while they slept and items, including purses and wallets were stolen. Other residents reported items stolen from their vehicles or saw a suspicious person near their homes or on home surveillance video.

Most of the stolen items, excluding cash, were recovered discarded in the area after the thefts, officials said.

No other arrests are expected, Saratoga County Sheriff's Captain Jeff Brown said at a Wednesday press conference.

Investigators looked at early apparent patterns in the burglaries, but they eventually became inconsistent, Brown said.

“We looked extensively at that in the beginning. We did find some similarities initially, that the homes had some sort of woods lining behind them or on the side, where he expected he might have a good escape, but that wasn’t with 100 percent of the houses,” Brown said. “It appeared that he was looking for residences that were unlocked. Either the doors were unlocked or he could cut a screen, remove it, and the windows weren’t latched. He could just push the window up to get in.”

In total, Lester entered around 10 houses, Brown said. He also stole items from a half dozen vehicles. Lester was employed at Buffalo Wild Wings in Clifton Park and lived with a roommate, who was not involved with the burglaries, Brown added.

Brown noted that there was some indication that the burglaries were the result of a drug addiction, but that there wasn’t enough conclusive evidence to be sure.

“He didn’t indicate that to us, so we don’t really know what was going on in his mind. His motive was to steal money,” he said.

Clifton Park Town Supervisor Phil Barrett commended the sheriff’s department for their work on the case. Investigators worked nonstop, he said.

“They did a tremendous job. They’ve been working overtime, seven days a week since this string of burglaries were taking place and it just shows once again something that we know as residents of Clifton Park, but it highlights the fact that we have an incredible police force here working in Clifton Park,” he said.

Lester also faces one count of misdemeanor petit larceny and misdemeanor seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.

He was arraigned and ordered held without bail. State parole also has a warrant lodged for Lester, officials said.

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