Ferndale Police arrested three men on Sunday who are suspected of being involved in recent parking meter thefts.
Police arrested James Richard O'Neil, 48; Terry Dale Craig, 28 and a third man, all of whom live in Jackson, Mich.
Parking meters in Ferndale have had the money stolen from them at least four times so far this year, Ferndale Police Lt. William Wilson wrote in a press release on Tuesday. Other local communities have been experiencing the same problem.
Around 5 a.m. Sunday, Ferndale Patrol Sgt. Daniel Simon noticed a suspicious person (Craig) walking a dog in the area of Nine Mile and Woodward. He observed this man and another person in the area and made contact with them individually.
The men had traits similar to suspects in various thefts of money from parking meters, the report states. The thefts seemed to be committed by people with keys to open the meters.
Upon further investigation, the sergeant determined there was reason to believe these two men were stealing money from parking meters, the report states. A check on one of the men showed he had two felony warrants for breaking into coin machines in Petoskey and Traverse City, according to police.
The two suspects were arrested as the investigation continued.
Officers then found another man acting as if he were sleeping in a Ford Expedition parked in a nearby parking lot. Investigation led the officers to believe that this person (O’Neil) was also a participant in the morning thefts and he was arrested, according to police.
The investigation continues and information will be shared with other departments across the state to determine if these suspects are involved in other similar crimes, police said.
Two suspects charged
O'Neil - who police said has a criminal hisory dating back to 1983 - and Craig are charged with Breaking and Entering a Coin Operated Device.
Bond was set at $10,000 cash/surety for Craig and $25,000 cash/ surety for O’Neil, the report states.
The third man arrested, who reportedly has an extensive criminal record dating back to 1966, was arrested on the outstanding warrants from Traverse City and Petoskey. He has not been charged related to the Ferndale parking meter break-ins at this time, police said.