An investigation of a Saturday morning burglary produced confessions by suspects, a recovered safe and jewelry found buried in a hole in La Plata County.
Joshua Trout, 19, and Robert Rader, 21, both of Pagosa Springs, were arrested on charges of second-degree burglary, theft and criminal mischief for their involvement in the incident.
Archuleta County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Michael Bishop responded to 31 Cactus Drive Saturday following reports that a house had been burglarized.
According to preliminary reports by the ACSO, the victims, a husband and wife, said they left their house at about 8:30 a.m. to go to a farmer’s market. At approximately 10:30 a.m., the husband reported he returned to the house and noticed the dogs were not in the entry room, as usual, though the door leading to the upstairs living area was closed.
The dogs were in the living area, as well as items taken out of cabinets and drawers and left on the floor. The husband reported he was in a hurry and thought the dogs had made the mess.
When the couple returned to the house at about 1:30 p.m., the wife found the door to the bedroom had been kicked in, and that a safe and its contents were missing.
The wife reported to Bishop that she believed her son or some of his friends (Trout and Rader) may have been responsible.
A neighbor’s child reported seeing Trout’s truck at the residence that morning between 9 and 9:30 a.m., but the sight was not unusual.
The wife reported Trout had been married to a woman who shares the house, and that a door between the two parts of the house was normally left open.
The next day, Bishop contacted the victim again, who said the woman who shared the house had a sister who had been with Trout and Rader the day before and that the three were going to the sheriff’s office to speak with Bishop.
After first denying the burglary during the interview, Trout admitted he and Rader went to the house, and said he had entered the house from the woman’s side of the building, then entered the victims residence and admitted Rader.
Trout reported that, after taking the safe out of the house, he and Rader removed the hinges from the safe and found cash, personal paperwork, jewelry and other items. Trout reported he was nervous, so the suspects burned most of the paperwork.
Rader, too, first denied involvement, but then confessed to his involvement He noted he and Trout tried to spend most of the cash in Durango the afternoon of the burglary, and said they hid the safe in some bushes. The two turned over the remaining cash to authorities.
Bishop and Det. George Barter found the safe containing burnt items hidden in bushes in Turkey Springs. The safe was covered with a camouflage shirt and had visible pry marks in addition to removed hinges, according to the report.
Barter reported that what appeared to be all of the jewelry, some credit cards and personal papers were recovered Tuesday from a hole located near U.S. 550 in La Plata County, after the suspects informed him of the location. “No one would have ever found it,” said Barter.