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Man charged, police still investigating burglaries

| Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013, 8:57 p.m.

A Baldwin Borough man has been charged in connection with a Blossom Road burglary last week, and an investigation continues to determine if he is linked to several others that occurred in the area during the last two and half months, police said.

Allegheny County police charged William Joseph Murphy III, 28, of Baldwin Borough, with criminal trespass, burglary, sale or transfer of firearms and two counts of receiving stolen property on Jan. 4.

A preliminary hearing for Murphy III is scheduled in front of district Judge John Bova on Jan. 29.

Baldwin Borough police began receiving reports of burglaries at homes on Blossom Road and Eileen Drive in mid-October, Chief Michael Scott said. There have been six burglaries at homes — during the day, mostly where doors have been unlocked — since, he said. There were no signs of forced entry in any of the burglaries, Scott said.

Items taken from the homes included change, jewelry and weapons, Scott said.

Police increased patrols in the area, with officers stationed nearby, and neighbors remained vigilant, Scott said.

“The neighbors have really been on the lookout,” he said.

On Friday, a Blossom Drive resident returned home around 5 p.m. and heard noise in the upper floor of his home, police said. A man who was inside the home fled and the homeowner followed suit, the chief said.

The man inside the home, later identified as Murphy III, was seen entering another home in the 600 block of Blossom, Scott said. The homeowner, his mother, gave officers permission to search the residence and Murphy III was taken in by Allegheny County police for questioning, Scott said.

Murphy III also was found in possession of a holster for a gun that had been stolen from one of the homes, the chief said.

Baldwin Borough police received assistance from several area departments including Whitehall, Brentwood and Bethel Park.

Baldwin police are continuing their investigation into the remaining burglaries.

The recent burglaries serve as another reminder for residents to lock their doors — both homes and cars, the chief said.

“This isn't 30 years ago anymore. Even if you're going inside your house for a minute, you should lock your doors,” Scott said.

Stephanie Hacke is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-388-5818 or shacke@tribweb.com.

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