Police Blotter — The Summer Rundown

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.

Hear Ye, Hear Ye,

Local criminal of the Ville. Your dirty endeavors and ravenous plights of good and services will be halted. In the name of the law and daily free press, your exploits are being made public so that one day you may face the tribunal of infamy and justice.



June 5th thru 8th, 2009: Theft of Bicycle, Jewelry, and Video Game

A person shopping at a store in the 300 block of Dartmouth Avenue placed her bicycle in front of the store at approximately 6:00 p.m. on 6/6/2009.  She returned about one half hour later and the bicycle had been taken.  It had not been locked.  The bike was valued at $200.  Officer Stilwell took the report.
On 6/5/2009 a resident in the 200 block of Dartmouth Avenue discovered a memory card missing from a video game.  Further investigation revealed a diamond ring had also been taken from the residence.  The items were last known to have been in place on 4/29/2009.  The loss at this time is estimated to be $3,700.  Officer Bardo is investigating.
A resident in the unit block of Ogden Avenue discovered several items of jewelry had been from a bedroom closet.  The theft was discovered on 6/8/2009.  The items were there earlier in the day.  An inventory is being completed to determine what is missing.  Officer Maginnis is investigating.
On 6/14/2009, in the early morning hours,  Officer Hinckley was on routine patrol on S. Chester Road near Fieldhouse Lane when he observed a vehicle jacked up and the left front tire missing.  Attempts to contact the owner were negative so the investigation was turned over to Officer Aloi after the shift change.  Officer Aloi contacted the owner and determined the tire and wheel had been stolen.  The loss is estimated at $250.

July 10th, 2009: Bicycle Theft and Street Vandalism

A resident in the 300 block on N. Chester Road left his bicycle outside his bedroom window on 7/10/2009.  On 7/11/2009 at approximately 2:00 p.m. he discovered the bicycle missing.  It had not been locked.  Officer Aloi took the report.

On 7/10/2009 a homeowner in the 30 block of N. Swarthmore Avenue reported a street number sign and light fixture at the end of her driveway had been damage overnight.  The damage was estimated at $400.  Officer Hinckley took the report.
A bicycle was left on the front porch of a residence in the 300 block of N. Chester Road on 7/2/2009.  The owner went to retrieve the bike on 7/7/2009 and discovered it missing.  The bicycle is valued at $400.  Officer Hinckley took the report.

Dealing with Solicitors 101

The police department has responded to several calls regarding solicitors over the past two weeks.  These solicitors have been selling magazine subscriptions, home improvements, and asking for donations for environmental causes.  Hopefully this article can offer some advice for dealing with these concerns.
The Swarthmore Borough Ordinance was changed in July of 2007 in response to court decisions.  Solicitors are no longer required to get permits from, or register with, the Borough.  Persons who do not want solicitors coming on their property must post a sign, poster, or other device, not to exceed 2 square feet, at the front portion or entrance of the dwelling that is conspicuously lettered NO SOLICITING.
If your property is not posted with this notice there are other steps you can take:
Politely tell the person you are not interested and ask them to leave the property. In the event the solicitor represents a cause or product in which you are interested ask the person for identification and listen to the information.  If you are still interested ask the person to leave some literature or contact information so you can do some further research before writing a check or giving money.  If the solicitor states the deal is only good right now or demands immediate payment you should be extremely suspicious. Legitimate causes and products can withstand further scrutiny.  Research by a resident of a recent solicitation for a magazine subscription revealed several Internet articles reporting the company to be unreliable.  This resident was advised to stop the check that had been written.  Anyone else with similar concerns should take the same steps.
Solicitors should not be allowed to enter your property.  There are various scams where one person diverts the attention of a resident while another enters the property and takes money, jewelry, or other property.  Additionally, no personal information such as dates of birth, social security numbers, or credit card numbers, should be disclosed to solicitors.
If a solicitor refuses to leave your property, is insistent or abusive, or causes you any concern whatsoever, call 911 immediately.  Officers can conduct an investigation based on these concerns.  We have responded to several such calls.  The officers have expressed their concerns to the solicitors and, on occasion, contacted the involved organization regarding the behavior of the solicitor.  Legitimate organizations respond positively when notified of resident’s concerns.
As always, if you have any questions regarding this or any other topic please do not hesitate to contact us at 610-543-0123 or by e-mail at Swarthpd1@aol.com.          

A resident in the 200 block of Park Avenue reported stalks of bamboo in his yard had been cut down over the past two weeks.  The bamboo appeared to have been cut with a large bladed instrument.  No value was given.  Officer Kline took the report.
August 2nd, 2009: Vandalism at Swarthmore Home and Public Pool

On 8/2/2009 at 10:14 p.m. Officer Bardo received a radio call of persons in the pool at the Swarthmore Swim Club after the pool was closed.  Officer Bardo responded and requested assistance from the Springfield Police Department.  Springfield Police reported they believed persons fled through a fence adjoining their township.  Investigation revealed chairs and benches thrown in the pool and damage to the basketball court.  Total damage was estimated at $400.  A skateboard was recovered from the scene and taken as evidence.  The investigation is continuing.
On 8/10/2009 at approximately 10:00 p.m. a group of 4 juveniles was walking on Yale Avenue near Little Crum Creek Park.  The group was confronted by a male juvenile who had come out of the park and told them to stop.  This male told one of the victims to give him the bicycle he had and told the males if they didn’t comply he would “drop” them.  7 other juveniles emerged from Little Crum Creek Park.  All but 1 immediately left the scene.  The confrontation continued with the 2 male actors demanding money and a cell phone from the victims.  The victims resisted and, as they were struggling with the actors, passersby on Yale Avenue stopped and offered assistance.  The 2 actors fled on foot.  Officer Stilwell arrived on the scene and gave a description of the suspects over police radio.  Springfield Township police stopped two males fitting the description in the 400 block of Yale Avenue in Springfield.  The victims identified the suspects who were then placed under arrest and charged with robbery, simple assault, harassment, disorderly conduct and underage drinking.
August 13th – 14th, 2009: Attempted B&E and Construction Site Theft

A property owner in the unit block of Dartmouth Avenue reported finding pry marks and a footprint on a rear door on 8/13/2009 at 8:00 p.m.  The property was last known secure at 6:00 p.m. the previous day.  No entry was gained to the house.  Officer Aloi took the report.
Building materials were taken from a construction site in the 600 block of N. Chester Road between 3:00 p.m., 8/14/2009 and 12:00 noon, 8/16/2009.  The value of the property was placed at $150.  Sergeant Stufflet took the report.

August 23rd & 26th, 2009: Theft


On 8/23/2009 at 11:20 a.m. a contractor was checking on one of his properties in the 600 block of N. Chester Road.  He observed a green Ford F-150 pick up truck taking metal from the rear of the property.  The contractor blocked the driveway to call police.  The green pick up drove over the grass and onto N. Chester Road speeding north to Baltimore Pike.  A description was broadcast over police radio but the truck was not located.  Sergeant Thomas took the report.
On 8/26/2009 at approximately 3:00 a.m. Sergeant Stufflet received a call of a theft that just occurred at the Co-op in the 300 block of Dartmouth Avenue.   A delivery truck driver stated he had observed two males take bread from the platform at the rear of the store where a delivery had just been completed.    A description was broadcast over police radio and a Morton police officer observed males fitting the description at Park and S. Princeton Avenues.  They were in possession of bread items taken from the platform.  Both males were juveniles and were taken to the Swarthmore Police Department and the parents were notified.  Theft charges are pending.

August 27th, 2009: DUI


At 1:01 a.m. on 8/27/2009 Officer Aloi was on routine patrol when he observed a vehicle on Rutledge Avenue pull into a driveway and nearly strike a tree.  The vehicle pulled out of the driveway and committed several traffic violations.  The vehicle was stopped and an odor of intoxicants was detected while Officer Aloi was getting driver and registration information.  The operator failed several field sobriety tests and was placed under arrest for driving under the influence.

August 28th, 2009: BB Gun Thru Window


A resident in the 500 block of Ogden Avenue discovered an apparent BB hole in a window of her house on 8/28/2009 at approximately 8:00 a.m.  The window was last known to be intact on 8/27/2009 at 8:30 p.m.  Officer Stilwell took the report.

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