Cops bust man in car break-ins


Cobleskill Village Police charged a local man with breaking into up to 20 vehicles and stealing valuables worth thousands of dollars.
Arrested Thursday night was Nathan A. Merchant, 22, of Cobleskill. He was charged with one count of fifth-degree possession of stolen property and one count of petty larceny.
Working on information developed through a tip from an unrelated case, police obtained a search warrant for Mr. Merchant’s residence and recovered the stolen property, officers said.
Among the belongings were GPS units, disc players, Play Stations, Ipods and MP3 players, radar detectors, wallets and purses.
Police estimated the value of the property in the thousands.
Police Sergeant Rich Bialkowski said the thefts occurred over the past month or so in the village and surrounding towns.
There was no damage to the vehicles, he said; all were unlocked.
Mr. Merchant was committed to the Schoharie County Jail in lieu fo $2,000 cash bail, $4,000 bond.
Additional felony and misdemeanor charges are expected and will be lodged at his next court appearance, police said.
Sergeant Bialkowski advised residents to remove valuables from their cars or to lock them.
Police are also asking that anyone who has been the victim of a car larceny in the Cobleskill area to contact them at 234-2111 to help identify the recovered items.
Trooper Timothy Preston of the State Police in Cobleskill assisted in the investigation.