Galloway Police Officer Scott Winneberger and his K-9 partner, Lycos, tracked down a suspect who was subsequently arrested following a burglary on Thursday, Dec. 20, police said Monday night, Dec. 24.
Police were initially called to the scene of a burglary in progress on the 700 block of Wood Lane in the Highlands section of the township at 4:30 a.m. last Thursday, police said. The home's occupant had called police and reported an attempted entry by the suspect, who fled the scene by the time police arrived, police said.
The resident reported a 50-inch TV and an Xbox video game was stolen from an enclosed portion of the patio, police said.
The suspect was spotted fleeing the scene by Gail Lane residents, who then described the suspect as 6-feet tall and dressed in dark clothing, including a hooded jacket and cargo pants, according to police.
Winneberger and Lycos conducted a track of the suspect, which led from the victim's home to the 700 block of Cheltenham Avenue, according to police. It was at that point that police discovered 26-year-old Ricardo Rodriguez out of breath, sweating profusely, and matching the description witnesses had provided, police said.
Rodriguez was arrested on outstanding traffic warrants out of Egg Harbor Township, and then charged by Galloway Police with burglary and theft. Cash bail for the burglary and theft charges was set at $50,000, and Rodriguez was lodged in the Atlantic County Justice Facility, police said.
Winneberger and Lycos have officially been partners with the police force since May, when they graduated from the K-9 course at John "Sonny" Burke Canine Training Facility.
Prior to that, Winneberger's K-9 partner was Blaze, until Blaze died of cardiovascular problems in June of 2011.
In October of last year, an anonymous person made a to the K-9 unit, which allowed the department to bring Lycos into the mix.
Anyone with additional information regarding Thursday's incident or related incidents can call Patrol Officer Steve Vernon or Det Goehringer at 609-652-3705 Ext 320.