Smithville Police were busy Tuesday with numerous investigations leading to multiple arrests and the recovery of items taken form local merchants. The arrests included Theft Under and Over $500.00, extensive Credit Card Fraud, Sales and Delivery of Narcotics, DUI and Child Endangerment.
Chief Thomas J. Stufano says Smithville Police, working in cooperation with area merchants and corporate security from a credit card company, were able to positively identify 20 year old Nicholas Mongello of 1222 College Street, in Smithville as the person responsible for stealing a victim's purse from the Walmart Shopping Center.
Chief Stufano says Mongello, who worked for Walmart, had taken the purse from the victim while she placed bags of groceries in her car in the parking lot. Walmart corporate security, with the assistance of the Store Manager Matt Ciramella, was able to review closed circuit video showing the incident which aided in the investigation. The case then snowballed as Investigators and auditors found that Mongello had been stealing large denominations of cash from the store's cash drawers and concealing the money in his clothing. Contact was also made with the victim's Credit Card Company and a review of account activity disclosed that Mongello had made numerous purchases from other area merchants with the stolen credit card. The merchandise was then taken to Mongello's apartment.
Chief Stufano says investigators learned that Mongello and his roommate had tried to conceal the thefts by returning some of the items purchased and obtaining cash back instead of crediting back the card account.
Investigators were able to recover a large amount of stolen items at Mongello's apartment which included the victim's purse and ID, a new large screen HD TV, Surround Sound Stereo System, lamps, pots/pans, dishes etc. The stolen credit card was found in Mongello's wallet at the time of arrest. Mongello was transported to the DeKalb County Jail on a $7,500 bond. The investigation is continuing and additional charges are pending upon notification of the numerous victims in the case.
Meanwhile 39 year old Troy Bain of 420 Hayes Street in Smithville was arrested Tuesday. Chief Stufano says Bain had been cutting across a field near Hayes Street and Gentry Avenue and acting suspicious by trying to conceal his face and then looking back to see if officers, who were on patrol in the area, had spotted him. As the officers approached Bain, he attempted to run and threw a clear plastic baggy onto the ground. He was quickly stopped and officers found in the baggy over (20) Hydrocodone pills. Due to the amount and type of pills, Bain was arrested for Sale and Delivery of Narcotics and transported to the DeKalb County Jail under a $10,000 bond.
25 year old Chasity Phillips of 350 Shady Lane in Smithville was arrested Tuesday for DUI and Reckless Endangerment. Officers stopped Phillips due to her driving erratically and crossing the centerline numerous times. Sobriety tests were administered but Phillips was unable to stand due to her intoxication. Her five month old baby, who was also in the vehicle, was subsequently released to a family member. Phillips was arrested for DUI and Child Endangerment and transported to the DeKalb County Jail under a $5,000 bond.
Chief Stufano says \"Smithville Police are actively investigating all crimes committed in the city and value the support and response the community is lending in helping develop leads and identify criminal activity in the neighborhoods. If you have information that may help identify suspicious activity please call us at 615-597-8210. As always your information will be treated confidentially.\"