Slew of northeastern Columbia break-ins halted
Jan 28, 2011 6:58 am
[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="200" caption="Bryan D. Geel, 26, is facing 17 felonies for allegedly breaking into houses in the towns of Ghent, Chatham, Canaan, and the village of Valatie. Photo by police."][/caption]A Chatham man was arrested Wednesday, January 26, after allegedly breaking into 17 residences in a two week period. He was caught, said authorities, after he burglarized the home of someone who knew him and called police. According to reports on the case in the Register-Star and Times Union, Columbia County sheriff’s deputies responded to a 911 call from a 15-year-old girl who had called after a pick-up truck she didn’t recognize came up her driveway and Geel allegedly entered her house. Police say she hid under her bed until the intruder left. Soon after that incident the State Police responded to another Ghent residence where Geel was surprised by a homeowner who recognized him while the suspect was going through kitchen cabinets. Geel was later picked up in Chatham and was taken to the State Police barracks in Livingston. Bryan D. Geel, 26, is now facing 17 felonies for allegedly breaking into houses in the towns of Ghent, Chatham, Canaan, and the village of Valatie. All the crimes occurred during the day, said police. The police said Geel has been cooperative and has admitted to the crimes and said he was looking for prescription drugs, among other items, during the break-ins. The suspect has been charged by the State Police with nine counts of second-degree burglary, a class C felony. The Sheriff’s Office has charged Geel with seven counts of second-degree burglary and one count of attempted second-degree burglary, a class D felony. He was arraigned in Ghent Town Court and remanded to the Columbia County Jail without bail pending further court action. Geel is scheduled to reappear in Ghent Town Court Jan. 31 at 2 p.m.