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November 10, 2009 - 5:59pm

County Manager Gsell helps apprehend alleged car thief

posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Jay Gsell.

Jay Gsell can polish up his resume. Under "Genesee County Manager" he can add "Batavia Crime Fighter."

Gsell helped Batavia police capture an alleged car thief this morning.

mug-kyle_monroe.jpgPolice received a report at 5:45 a.m. of an auto theft in progress at 310 Washington Ave. 

When police officers responded, they found the car partially in the roadway and abandoned.

Gsell was out for his morning run and saw a suspect jump over a fence near where the car was abandoned. Gsell provided police with a description of the suspect and then continued on his way.

A short time later, Gsell reportedly spotted the same man near the Richmond Memorial Library. He dialed 9-1-1.

Apprehended by police was Kyle Monroe (pictured). Monroe allegedly possessed the keys to the vehicle at the time of his arrest.

The same car was reported stolen twice before. The first time, on Oct. 29, the car was recovered in the area of the sand wash on Cedar Street. It was determined that keys were used to steal the car, but the keys were not recovered.

The same car was stolen again on Nov. 6.  It was recovered two days later on Holland Avenue. Again, investigators determined that keys were used to heist the vehicle, but again, the keys were not recovered.

After two thefts, the owner placed an anti-theft device on the steering wheel, which apparently helped thwart the third attempt.

Monroe was charged with criminal possession of stolen property and the investigation is ongoing. More charges may be filed.

The same suspect was arrested Oct. 24 in the Town of Batavia, according to police, when he was allegedly caught driving a different stolen vehicle. He was charged with criminal possession of stolen property in that case, as well.

UPDATE Wednesday, 8:27:  I asked Det. Rich Schauf if there was any link between Monroe and the car break-ins of the summer months, and whether the keys to the stolen car might have been taken during one of those break-ins.  Here is Det. Schauf's response:

The best we can tell is the keys were found and used while Monroe was (allegedly, ed.) illegally going “through” the car on the 29th, the first time the car was stolen. We do suspect he is one of the people involved in illegal car entries over the summer. At this point we do not have any conclusive evidence to link him to other illegal car entries.  Also, to answer one of the readers’ questions about Grand larceny. In this case the suspect was arrested for Criminal Possession of stolen property for possessing the keys to the car which were stolen. To prove Grand Larceny the person would need to be caught in the act of stealing the car or admitting to stealing it. Most often a person caught in a stolen car will not admit to stealing it. Unless it can be proven they stole the car, the  charge of criminal possession of stolen property may be used. Or if the element of “knowingly” possessed stolen property cannot be proved another charge of unauthorized use of a motor vehicle may apply.  Both Criminal Possession of stolen property fourth and Grand Larceny fourth are classified as E Felonies.

Mike Kelly
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In this and a previous story.....what has become of the charge of 'grand larceny'?
Howard B. Owens
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Mike, I just posted an update from Det. Rich Schauf that answers your question about grand larceny.
Robert Bennett
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Here's a crazy idea. Take the keys out of your car!
Beth Kinsley
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I don't think that the keys were in the car. This alleged car thief seemed to have his own set of keys but my question is - how hard (and expensive) is it to have the ignition changed so that the old key no longer works? Like changing your house locks? I imagine the cost must be prohibitive or the car owner would have done it after the first time.

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