Man Accused of Stealing Items From Rochester Police Squad Car

July 26, 2018 05:50 PM

(ABC 6 News) -- When a Rochester police officer responded to a panic alarm at a business Wednesday, the case was just beginning. Then he learned that the bulletproof vest the suspect was wearing belonged to the police department.

The Rochester Police Department says when a police cruiser was dropped off for service at Rochester Ford on Tuesday, equipment inside the vehicle, including a bulletproof vest, was accounted for.

"Just before this car was sent in for service, it was inventoried and all that equipment was there when it was inventoried. It was taken by our staff to Rochester Ford, where it was serviced,” said Lt. Mike Sadauskis of the Rochester Police Department.

That vest was found on a 19-year-old Rochester man, Souleysi Singharath, Wednesday after police responded to a panic alarm at Melting Clock Smoke Shop on Elton Hills Drive N.W.

Police say Singharath was seen wearing what appeared to be a bulletproof vest and implied he had a weapon when he threatened a group of customers in the store, then left.

When an officer responded, Singharath was initially uncooperative -- eventually making a move toward his pants pocket while on the ground.

He removed his phone, and told police he just wanted to call his mom.

The officer took him into custody and discovered the bulletproof vest he was wearing was one of their own.


“There were markings on it that indicated it was our vest. The markings are associated with a patrol car, with the number of the patrol car,” Sadauskis said.

The squad car was brought into Rochester Ford for maintenance on Tuesday.

A search of Singharath's home late Wednesday night found additional equipment – two full magazines of AR-15 ammunition, a medical kit and drag straps – all allegedly taken from the squad car.

Police say Singharath, who is in custody pending formal charges, works at a dealership near Rochester Ford.

Officials at Rochester Ford declined to speak on camera, but they said they're still trying to figure out exactly what happened.


Alice Keefe

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