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The movie’s over for bandits, but some people recover stolen items
Gail Genereau and her husband had only left the house for 45 minutes on June 25 when burglars broke into their home and stole a variety of things including much of the jewelry she had spent 40 years collecting.
The Lake Forest Park resident never thought she’d see any of the stolen items again, but decided to stop by the Redmond Police Department (RPD) Tuesday afternoon to see if she would find anything among the thousands of items released by the department in relation to the “Movie Bandits” case from earlier this year.
The case involved a 31-year-old man and 36-year-old woman who would break into vehicles in public parking lots such as movie theaters or shopping centers, steal the vehicle registration and other valuables in the car and then proceed to the victims’ residences, knowing they weren’t home. The pair targeted about 60 victims and their crime spree was mainly contained to King and Snohomish counties, but also included the cities of Mount Vernon and Wenatchee.
Genereau said their burglary, which occurred after the initial rash of crimes in the spring, didn’t match this description but many of the cities surrounding Lake Forest Park were hit by the Movie Bandits, so they decided to make the trip to Redmond. They didn’t have anything to lose, she said.
The trip was worth it.
As Genereau walked through the RPD training room where all the stolen property was displayed, she discovered a lot of the costume and antique jewelry she thought she’d lost forever.
“It feels wonderful,” she said. “I’m seeing things I thought I’d never see again.”
While Genereau was fortunate to recover some of her lost items, others weren’t so lucky.
“It’s such a range of emotions,” said RPD spokesperson Jim Bove.
He said some people who stopped by the department in hopes of retrieving their lost property arrived shaken and distraught to be revisiting a crime that happened more than half a year ago and then left the same way. Others recovered some items but decided not to keep them because they did not hold any real value and the victims felt the items were dirty and tainted by crime, Bove said.
One woman found only one bracelet among the stolen property, but was just happy to know that the people responsible for the crimes have been caught.
It was reported earlier that the RPD arrested the Movie Bandits on Aug. 1 in Bothell. Officers went to arrest the female suspect for rendering criminal assistance and were met by a fleeing male, who was then captured by Redmond police dog Vader.
Bove said they believe the two suspects, who are from Bothell, are responsible for four auto thefts, four attempted burglaries, 19 car prowls, four commercial burglaries, 26 residential burglaries, one combined car prowl and residential burglary, three combined residential burglaries and auto thefts and two residential burglary frauds.
The female suspect has been charged and released and is currently awaiting a court date for her trial. The male suspect has been arraigned and is still in custody. While in jail, the two suspects have since gotten married.
“It’s a sign that you can find true love just about anywhere,” Bove said.