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Stolen antiques worth thousands recovered in Akron home, deputies haul away items by the truckload

Posted at 5:57 PM, Oct 12, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-12 17:57:49-04

Medina County detectives found so many stolen antiques and knick-knacks inside a rental home that multiple vehicles were used during two trips from Akron to Medina to transport the stash of evidence to the sheriff's office.

"I'm surprised we recovered all of this. Most of the time we're not that lucky," said Sgt. Kevin Ross.

The stolen valuables included a jelly cupboard with a price tag of $499 and a marble wolf statue with an estimated value of $200.

Other items that were inventoried and loaded into a property room include lamps, figurines, carvings and Christmas decorations.

Ross estimated the total value between $10,000 and $15,000.

Investigators suspect most, if not all of the items, were stolen during multiple break-ins to Wagon Wheel Gift Shop on Medina Road in Granger Township.

On Thursday morning, the owner of the shop called 911 after her stepson reported seeing a U-Haul and suspicious people outside of the business.

"I think somebody is breaking into my shop right now," the owner said. "They already ripped me off and stolen a bunch of stuff, but apparently they're not done and they're back there again." She then added, "They'll catch the thieves right in the act."

Medina County deputies and Montville Township police officers responded and found two women and a man loading up the U-Haul, according to Ross.

When police questioned one of the women she explained that other valuables from the shop would be found at a home on Ford Avenue on Akron's east side. The woman went with investigators and pointed out some of the antiques, but not all of them, Ross told News 5.

"The victim came over and identified several more things. We were out until late last night. It took us two trips from Akron to Medina to recover all of the items. We had two pickup trucks and three vehicles," Ross said.

The store had essentially been shut down over the past three years because the owner was caring for a relative, but Ross doesn't think the owner made plans to close it for good and much of the inventory was locked up in the building.

Detectives suspect other items stolen from the shop were sold on social media sites such as Craigslist and OfferUp.

No arrests were made. Detectives continue to investigate what they call "convoluted stories" told by the three persons of interest. Charges of breaking and entering or burglary are possible.

The on-going investigation will also look into the possibility of other victims.

"We might end up getting bigger than this one. That's something we'll have to find out," Ross said.

The owner of the shop declined to comment.