Police arrest husband and wife in doorstep thefts

February 04, 2010|By Andrea F. Siegel | Baltimore Sun reporter

A police stakeout in a section of Annapolis plagued in recent weeks by thefts of packages from doorsteps led officers to a husband-and-wife team now charged in several of the incidents.

Undercover officers watched Wednesday afternoon as a UPS delivery person left a package at a home in the first block of Whisperwind Lane and then saw a man go to the house 12 minutes later and take it, police spokesman Ray Weaver said.

An officer tried to stop the man, but he drove off in a black Chevrolet Blazer and threw the package from a window of his vehicle, Weaver said. Officers found the Blazer nearby, but no driver, and then stopped a man on foot.

In a search of the man's apartment Wednesday night, police said they found new merchandise -- clothes, electronics and more -- and shipping boxes that pointed to a number of package thefts of "an extended period of time."

"They apparently had the boxes sitting around. The package labels were still there," Weaver said.

He said a woman at the apartment who said she was the man's wife knew about the package thefts.

Adrian Lamont Williams, 31, and Asetti Maonay Benjamin, 28, of the 200 block of Victor Parkway and Asetti Maonay Benjamin, both of an apartment in the 200 block of Victor Parkway, were arrested. Williams was charged with three counts each of theft of items on Wednesday and theft scheme.

Benjamin was charged with two counts of theft from January and one count of theft scheme dating back to early December. Both were released on their own recognizance Thursday, according to court records.

Police said they decided to conduct surveillance after receiving an increasing number of reports in the last several weeks of packages whisked from front porches in that area of Eastport before residents arrived home to retrieve the books, video games, computer accessories, food and other things they had been expecting.

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