GALLIPOLIS — A man who allegedly broke into one local business and attempted to break into a second last month, has been charged with two counts of felony breaking and entering and vandalism.
Lonnie R. Fooce, 22, Bidwell, was arrested on Saturday, January 11 in connection with the Steve Evans Sausage Plant and Backwoods Guns break-ins that occurred late last month in the Bidwell area.
The Gallia County Sheriff’s Office first sought the public’s help in identifying the suspect in relation to this case following the incident that occurred during the early morning hours of December 29.
Reportedly, deputies were dispatched at approximately 7 a.m. on December 29 to the Steve Evans Sausage Plant on Ohio 850 in regard to a possible break-in. The business owner was on scene and had reportedly discovered that someone had pried the front door of the facility open. After searching the building, the owner discovered that the freezer door had been left open and an undetermined amount of sausage had been stolen.
After further investigating the area, the deputy checked nearby businesses, including Backwoods Guns and Blodgett Dermatology.
According to the police reports, no entry was gained at Backwoods guns, but damage was reported to the door, frame, lock and garage door at the business.
At Blodgett Dermatology, the deputy discovered that a vehicle parked at that location had been damaged as one of its windows had been busted out. No further information in regard to the vehicle has been released.
Reportedly, the break-in and attempted break-in at the businesses on Ohio 850 occurred between approximately 4:30-5:30 a.m. on December 29.
Still frames from surveillance footage of the suspect were later released to the public and deputies subsequently identified a suspect in this case, arresting Fooce on Saturday.
Authorities with the sheriff’s office later thanked those in the public who assisted with information in this case via their Facebook page.
“We thank those of you that assisted with information in this case,” the statement said.
According to a complaint filed with the Gallipolis Municipal Court on Monday afternoon, Fooce was interviewed by deputies early on Sunday morning, and subsequently confessed to breaking into the sausage plant on Ohio 850, and attempting to break into Backwoods Guns by trying to pry open the door of the business and the garage door.
The defendant reportedly stated that he needed to make some money.
Fooce was reportedly present in the Gallipolis Municipal Court late on Monday afternoon and was charged with breaking and entering. The prosecution subsequently recommended that bond in the amount of $50,000, 10 percent, be set in this case.
The suspect is currently being held in the Gallia County Jail. It is expected that this case will later be bound over to the Common Pleas Court of Gallia County where it will be heard by a grand jury.