Wauwatosa police may have gotten a hand from their counterparts in Menomonee Falls in solving a number of recent burglaries at small businesses here.
A Wauwatosa man who was charged Monday in Waukesha County Circuit Court with attempted burglary also is suspected in other break-ins in that village and Wauwatosa, authorities say.
The criminal complaint filed against Scott M. Laskowski, 32, of 7257 W. North Ave., did not say which burglaries he is suspected of committing in Wauwatosa, but it referred to one as having been at "a flower shop."
Wauwatosa police could not be reached for comment Tuesday on exactly which break-ins Laskowski might be suspected in, but there have been a number that bore strong similarities to the Falls burglaries.
, 1460 Underwood Ave. in the Village, was broken in to Aug. 2 by a burglar who pried open the back door and the cash register. It was one of six small businesses hit that night; the other five were all on West North Avenue between 84th and 90th streets, although entry was gained to only three of them.
In three of those cases, the burglar or burglars tried to pry open a back door, succeeding once. At another location, a window air conditioner was pried out, and entry was gained to that business and, through an adjoining door, to another.
In all cases where entry was gained, only cash drawers and stashes of petty cash were targeted; goods were left untouched.
Not long before those burglaries, , and resale clothing shop were all burglarized on the same night and in the same fashion. And there have been more.
None of these businesses was protected by alarm systems, steel security doors or other measures.
Those circumstances were substantially the same in the string of burglaries in Menomonee Falls in which Laskowski is either charged or a suspect. Smaller, older downtown businesses with inadequate security were the targets.
Laskowski was arrested Thursday when a Menomonee Falls officer spotted him in the act of trying to pry open the back door of restaurant, N88w16718 Appleton Ave. He had various burglary tools and a crack pipe in his possession.
There was one odd difference in at least one job Laskowski is suspected of pulling – a difference that helped implicate him in that crime and more.
When police searched Laskowski's home, they found samples of peanuts, kettle corn and cheddar cheese flavored snacks stolen from a vending machine in a burglarized tattoo parlor.