Burglary suspects arrested after chase

BEECH GROVE, Ind. (WISH) –  Two men face charges after police say they stole thousands of dollars worth of lawn care equipment from a Beech Grove business.

Investigators say the two suspects, 55-year-old Anthony Allen of Fort Wayne, and 39-year-old Mark Johnson, led police on a chase late Thursday evening, after an officer tried to pull their truck over.

Police say they eventually crashed the truck near Madison and Knox, and both fled the scene.

Officials say K-9 units from Beech Grove and Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department were able to track them down, and arrest them.

But Detective Captain Robert Mercuri with Beech Grove police says a witness was able to alert them to the suspect’s truck in the first place.

The witness told 24-Hour News 8 she saw a suspicious truck, parked in front of an empty home next door to MacAllister Machinery on Elmwood Avenue.

“They pulled up, cut off the lights, and two guys just jumped out. I was like, what is going on?”

She said she saw them run to the back of the house, then come back and start loading things into the truck.

“That’s when I called the cops, and said, ‘some suspicious activity is going on,’” she added.

Police say the suspects were trying steal about $5,000 dollars worth of lawn care equipment from MacAllister Machinery.

“Maccalister Machinery has good security, that would also help, but no security is as good as a witness. Staying on the phone, watching those individuals, then relaying that information to law enforcement,” said Mercuri.

With the witness’ description, police say they found the truck, but the suspects led them on a chase, that went onto 465, then ended when the suspects crashed on the east side of Madison Avenue in the 3000 South Block.

It was then, police say both Anthony Allen and Mark Johnson took off from the car.

K-9 units found and arrested them.

With our K-9 making an arrest, their K-9 making an arrest. These are the people that are out there every night,” said Mercuri.

Mercuri says they’re now trying to figure out if the two are connected to any other burglaries in the central Indiana area.

“The Fishers Police Department and the Plainfield Police Department both contacted us, and advised they’d also had machine shops, like this, that had been broken into. That led us to believe it’s possible it’s connected to others around the central Indiana area,” said Mercuri.

Police say, it’s a prime example: if you see something – make sure you say something.

“I was just glad to help,” said the witness.

Johnson and Allen face preliminary charges of burglary, theft, and resisting law enforcement.

Police say Allen was also wanted on a burglary warrant out of Fort Wayne.

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