Thieves target businesses, construction sites
Incidents occurring along freeway

By Melanie Boyung - News Graphic Staff

July 6, 2017

GRAFTON — A string of burglaries has been reported in the town of Grafton over the past several weeks, with construction supplies disappearing overnight.

The Ozaukee County Sheriff’s Office issued a release Monday reporting four incidents since June 13.

“The incidents appear to be occurring in the proximity along (Interstate) 43 in the town of Grafton,” according to the release.

The most recent burglaries occurred Sunday or early Monday, before 6 a.m. Burglaries were reported from two commercial buildings, as well as from four enclosed trailers that were located on the properties of Paul Crandall & Associates and Cherney Brothers, both on North Port Washington Road. “We are asking the public to keep an eye out for suspicious behavior and to report any information regarding these incidents. Call us at 262-284-7172 or text ‘OZSO’ + your tip anonymously to 847411,” Sheriff’s Lt. Marshall Hermann wrote in the press release.

The first two incidents occurred either the night of Tuesday, June 13 or early in the morning June 14, both of which were reported later that day. A home under construction on Lakefield Road was entered by force and equipment was stolen between 6 p.m. and 6 a.m. Tools, construction materials and copper wire were taken.

“These incidents appear to be similar in nature based on the location of the targeted areas (commercial buildings, construction sites and trailers in the proximity along I-43 in the town of Grafton) and items taken (tools and construction equipment),” Hermann wrote.

The second incident that night was also on Lakefield Road, a block from the other burglary. At another residential construction site, a locked work trailer was broken into and tools and other equipment stolen. That incident was reported to have happened between 5 p.m. and 7 a.m.

Last Friday, a third burglary was reported. The maintenance shop on the grounds of Fire Ridge Golf Course was forcibly entered between 2:45 p.m. Thursday and 5 a.m. Friday. Several items were removed, including tools and equipment.

“We’re missing quite a bit of tools that were stolen, and small equipment we use for the golf course,” Fire Ridge owner Paul Melotik said.

Melotik said the business is working with the Sheriff’s Office on some ideas of how the burglary might have occurred, but has nothing solid yet.

While hopeful the burglaries will stop and the people involved will be caught, Melotik commented it is difficult with the events’ proximity to I-43, as the people burglarizing could be coming from anywhere.