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A Mineral Point man is being charged for three burglaries that took place between July 29 and Aug. 21, according to a statement from Washington County Sheriff Zach Jacobsen and probable cause statements obtained from the Washington County Prosecuting Attorney’s office.

Joshua T. Williams, 35, of Mineral Point, faces three counts of second-degree burglary, two counts of first-degree property damage, one count of misdemeanor property damage in the second degree, along with three counts of misdemeanor stealing.

According to official reports, the first burglary occurred on July 29 at P&L Grocery Store on Highway 8 outside of Potosi. Deputies were dispatched to the business just before 11 p.m. to investigate an alarm.

The deputies were told by the owner that the building had been burglarized. Upon further investigation it was apparent that someone had forced their way into the building.

The deputies obtained surveillance camera footage which provided evidence of the crime and an image of the suspect.

According to the probable cause statement, the perpetrator had used a claw hammer to break the front glass of a quarter machine. About $200 in quarters were taken from the machine.

Then on Aug. 17 a deputy was conducting a building check at Washington County Head Start in Mineral Point just before 4 a.m. when the officer saw evidence of a door being forced open.

A search of the building revealed the suspect had already left the scene.

Surveillance footage offered additional evidence and an image of the suspect, which matched that obtained from the July 29 burglary.

According to a probable cause statement, the video evidence showed the suspect in the building’s kitchen area loading food items into a blue wheeled cooler.

Deputies were told by Head Start staff that the cooler would have writing on top, labeling it as "summer food."

Then on Aug. 21 at about 2 a.m. deputies were dispatched to Roy’s Convenience Store on Old Highway 8 East. Once again investigating officers found forced entry and damage to property. Surveillance footage once again showed the suspect.

According to a probable cause statement, the video showed the man breaking the glass on a quarter machine in the store, taking an unknown amount of quarters and a $50 bill. Deputies were told the $50 was rolled up and bound with tape.

Deputies canvassed the area and discovered that the suspect had gone to the nearby B&M Quick Stop and purchased a 2-liter bottle of Dr. Pepper and a half gallon of chocolate milk using a $50 bill. Surveillance footage of that transaction showed the same person as the video from Roy’s Convenience Store. The $50 bill that was used to purchase the items had tape on it, as had the bill from the vandalized quarter machine.

After the suspect in the videos was identified as Williams, officers found him at his home and received verbal consent to search the property for stolen items. A blue cooler containing hamburger patties and cheese was found in the home, with the words “EMAA” and “summer food” written on top.

Clothing matching that seen in video surveillance were also found, in addition to tools matching those used in the crimes.

During an interview regarding the Aug. 21 burglary, Williams stated he had been home all night with his girlfriend. The girlfriend, however, separately stated that Williams had left the home and returned sometime in the early morning with a 2-liter bottle of Dr. Pepper.

According to a statement, the Washington County Sheriff’s Office is still seeking other individuals involved in the crimes. They request anyone with information contact the sheriff’s office at 573-438-5478, or Washington County Central Dispatch at 573-438-1079.

Jacob Scott is a reporter with the Daily Journal. He can be reached at 573-518-3616 or at jscott@dailyjournalonline.com.

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