Albany Police Department investigates Apartment C at 1401 Mulberry Ave. in connection with the burglary of “American Idol” winner Phillip Phillips’ father’s pawnshop in East Albany earlier this week.
ALBANY — Investigators swarmed over a four-unit apartment building at 1401 Mulberry Ave. at 4 p.m. Thursday, entering Apartment C in the search for stolen guns, flat-screen televisions and other items.
Albany Police Department officers took three men and one woman into custody before crime scene technicians who arrived in white vans searched the apartment in the tan stucco building.
“We had information that led us to try and recover some of the stolen goods from the burglary,” said police Lt. Carmelita Preston. “All the suspects are from the Mulberry location. They offered no resistance. Everything went smoothly.”
Officers were searching for the stolen items taken from “American Idol” winner Phillip Phillips’ father’s pawnshop at 1703 E. Oglethorpe Blvd. between 8 p.m. Monday and 8 a.m. Tuesday.
No information about those in custody or charges was immediately available. At 8:45 p.m. Thursday, Phyllis Banks, police spokeswoman sent a text: “They have several interviews but they assured me someone will be going to jail.”
Before arriving at Mulberry Avenue, the technicians searched Apartment B at 1316 Residence Ave. on search warrants. No information on what, if anything, they found was immediately available.
Residents in the Mulberry Avenue area turned out to watch officers tie yellow crime tape across the apartment’s parking lot. Everyone asked about the residents of Apartment C said they did not know who they were.
The burglars broke into Albany Sporting Goods and Pawn by smashing in the back door and wall with a stolen Water, Gas & Light Commission backhoe that had been parked 1.5 miles away.
A fourth man taken into custody at the scene was said to be the owner of the apartmentsby an official close to the investigation. His identity was not confirmed, but he was reported to be an employee at the Albany Sewer Systems Division.
The backhoe used to smash through the shop’s back wall and door was parked at the 1500 block of Clark Avenue. A thief drove it south on Eugene Lane and turned east on East Broad Avenue. The trail led down Nona Drive and eventually to the back of the pawnshop.
Police responded to an alarm at the pawnshop about 10 p.m. Monday, a police report stated. Officers responding to that alarm found nothing amiss. Officials say that could have been a test run for the burglars.
The burglars took no chances during the real burglary. The telephone, power and alarm wires were cut.
UPDATE (4:30 p.m.)
Four people have been placed in custody, but no charges have been filed in the pawnshop burglary case at this time.
In addition to the warrant executed at 1401 Mulberry Apt. C, a second warrant has been executed at 1316-B Residence Avenue in connection with the same case.
4:15 p.m. Wednesday
ALBANY - Police have executed search warrants in connection with the burglary of a pawnshop owned by "American Idol" Phillip Phillips' father.
The warrant is being executed at 1401 Mulberry Apt. C in Albany.
The burglary occurred sometime between 8 p.m. Monday and 8 a.m. Tuesday, when the suspects used a WG&L backhoe and broke down the door of the pawnshop.
This story will be updated as information becomes available.