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DL teen gets jail for burglaries

A Detroit Lakes teenager was convicted and sentenced July 3 in Becker County District Court on three felony counts of second-degree burglary.

Zachary Dean Leitheiser, 19, of 27960 Little Floyd Lake Road, Detroit Lakes, was given a stayed prison sentence on conditions including 180 days in jail and up to 10 years of supervised probation, as well as payment of his portion of $33,756 in joint restitution for damages. If he successfully completes probation, the charges will be reduced to misdemeanor convictions in his record.

Leitheiser was accused, along with Jeremy Michael Sannes-Venhuizen, 18, and Brandon Ray Nelson, 16, in connection with multiple burglaries reported on Sept. 22, 2011 -- all of them occurring in Becker County.

The charges stem from a Sept. 22 incident in which Foltz Trucking, Detroit Lakes, reported that several fire extinguishers had been discharged in the parking lot of its business. The extinguishers had been removed from Foltz's trucks without permission. About $806 in damage was caused; the incidents reportedly occurred between 6 p.m. on Sept. 21 and 7:30 p.m. on Sept. 22, when the break-in was reported.

A second call came in at around 10 a.m.; an ATV was found parked behind some semi trailers at Foltz Trucking. The ATV had been reported stolen from a residence on Sugar Creek Road in Ogema. Several broken windows were discovered at that residence, and a 30/30 caliber rifle and ammunition were reported stolen.

The owners of two more homes in the same area subsequently reported break-ins. At one of the residences, entry was gained by breaking down a door; a fire extinguisher was discharged inside the residence, and two rifles were reported stolen. A bullet hole was also found in the south window of the garage. This incident also occurred on Sept. 22.

On Sept. 23, another home was broken into by kicking in a door. Footprints were found and photographed at the scenes of all four break-ins.

Subsequent investigation led to the arrest of the three youths in connection with the burglaries; footprints found at the scene matched shoes found in one of the young men's possession.

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