Cops follow footprints in fresh snow to make arrest in robbery

A file photo shows footprints in the snow. (QMI Agency files)

A file photo shows footprints in the snow. (QMI Agency files)

Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 10:23 PM ET

WINNIPEG -- At least 13 businesses were broken into between Oct. 23 and Feb. 9, and police hadn't been able to locate the three suspects.

Then on Feb. 17, a triple robbery was foiled by some freshly fallen snow.

Police say all the incidents involved there suspects, commercial break-and-enters and stolen vehicles, largely in the north part of Winnipeg or in communities outside the city.

The last incident in the spree started Feb. 17 at 3:30 a.m. when a vehicle in the 1600-block of Inkster Boulevard was broken into and items stolen. At 3:45 a.m., two more nearby vehicles were broken into, and another at 4:15 a.m. in the 300-block of Oak Point Highway.

The suspect drove the vehicle to Leila Avenue and Monsey Street before ditching it.

A resident called police, who spotted the suspect's lone footprints in freshly fallen snow.

Officers were able to follow the prints to the 700-block of Leila Avenue where they found and arrested the suspect.

Damage and property stolen from within the vehicles is in excess of $13,000. All stolen vehicles were recovered.

Brant Rheal Blanchette, 44, has been charged and detained in custody.

The second suspect, 22-year-old Miles Melquist was identified during the investigation. Police issued an arrest warrant and were able to locate him Feb. 19 in the area of Salter Street and Selkirk Avenue. He was detained in custody.

On Feb. 20, the third suspect, a 21-year-old male from Winnipeg, was located and arrested for his alleged involvement. He was released via a promise to appear.


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