Shamokin police catch burglars in act
SHAMOKIN - Alert neighbors helped city police apprehend two would-be burglars in the 200 block of West Sunbury Street early Thursday.
Police officers were dispatched to the scene at 3:51 a.m. and were told two people, one wearing a black ski mask and carrying tools, were burglarizing 230 W. Sunbury St.
When officers arrived, they were told the burglars had crossed the street and entered 229 W. Sunbury St. Fresh foot prints were left in the snow outside. Another neighbor said she could hear someone inside the building.
The officers entered and allegedly found Michael Brandon Hanko, 25, of 123 S. Shamokin St., Shamokin, and a 17-year-old Coal Township male hiding in an oil tank room in the basement.
On the basement floor were bolt cutters, a crow bar and copper pipes cut from inside the home, according to a criminal complaint filed by Cpl. Bryan Primerano.
Hanko told police he had no job and needed the money, the complaint states. He and the juvenile drove in Hanko's girlfriend's vehicle to nearby Commerce Street and walked a short distance to the homes, bringing along the bolt cutters and a headband flashlight. The juvenile was wearing the flashlight when he was taken into custody, police said.
A male who had once lived at 229 W. Sunbury St. allegedly told Hanko there was copper to steal, according to police. Hanko didn't know the property's owner (identified in Northumberland County records as Cindy and Robert Santore), and he and the juvenile did not have permission to enter.
They didn't have permission to enter 230 W. Sunbury St., either, from where Hanko allegedly stole a CD and a bottle of prescription pills.
Zeuss Rentals LLC, Northumberland, operated by Larry Chubb, owns 230 W. Sunbury St., according to county and city records.
Both properties were unlocked, Hanko reportedly told police.
The neighbor who called police to the scene said 229 W. Sunbury St. was unoccupied. Attempts to reach the Santores were unsuccessful.
Hanko will be charged by Primerano with two first-degree felony counts of burglary, two third-degree felony counts of criminal trespass, a first-degree felony count of criminal conspiracy and a first-degree misdemeanor count of possessing an instrument of crime. He was jailed on outstanding warrants at Northumberland County Prison, Sunbury.
The juvenile will be charged by Primerano with two second-degree felony counts of burglary, two third-degree felony counts of criminal trespass, a second-degree felony count of criminal conspiracy and a first-degree misdemeanor count of possessing an instrument of crime. He was turned over to Northumberland County Juvenile Court officials, and a juvenile petition was filed against him by Patrolman William Miner.