Police: Former employee caught on roof after failed Shadyside jewelry store burglary
The owner of a Shadyside jewelry store said he was surprised and saddened that a former employee was arrested by police Friday after an early-morning burglary was reported.
“It’s surprising that anybody would come in, particularly a former employee,” said John Henne, owner of Henne Jewelers. “Everything is locked in the vault at night.”
Pittsburgh police found Vincent Raoul Michael Legrande, 22, of Carrick, between an air conditioning unit and a wall on the roof of the building at 5501 Walnut St.
When police found him, Legrande said Stephanus Esterhuysen, operations manager of the store, was going to be angry because Legrande was a former employee, police wrote in a criminal complaint. Esterhuysen responded to the alarm as well and let police in the building.
There were no signs of forced entry, but police found debris and damaged ceiling tiles in a rear office that led them upstairs and then to the roof, where they found Legrande, according to the complaint.
He told police he entered through an unlocked adjacent office and was able to force open a second door that he knew had a weak lock, according to the complaint.
He went to the roof to access the jewelry store, going through an air duct and on top of a drop ceiling, which broke and activated the alarm, according to the complaint.
Legrande reversed course and was hiding on the roof when he was taken into custody, police said.
Esterhuysen told police Legrande quit working at the store in January.
“I feel really sad for him. He’s a young man that was trying to get his life turned around. We were trying to help him,” Henne said. “It’s just unfortunate to see that he has done this, I truly feel very sad for him.”
Legrande is charged with burglary, criminal trespass, possessing instruments of crime and criminal mischief.
This is the second time this year Henne’s has been burglarized. A Jan. 15 burglar was unable to get anything of value because the jewels were locked in the vault, police said.
Tom Davidson is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tom at 724-226-4715, [email protected] or via Twitter .