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Doorbell camera leads to arrest of DeKalb County burglary suspect

Tommy Lee Wells

A man is in the DeKalb County Jail charged with burglary and theft of property.

Posted: Dec 30, 2020 2:45 PM

The DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office says a home’s doorbell camera helped in the arrest of a burglar.

Deputies received a call on Tuesday about a burglary on County Road 51 near Collinsville.

The camera at the home showed the suspect on a bicycle with no fenders and a basket or backpack on the handlebars. He was reported to have a full red beard and was wearing a toboggan.

The sheriff’s office says the suspect then approached a Fort Payne police officer at a gas station at Highway 11 and Interstate 59 on the north end of Fort Payne and asked for directions.

The officer recognized the suspect and detained him until a sheriff’s office deputy arrived.

Tommy Lee Wells, 33, is charged with burglary third degree and theft of property third degree.

DeKalb County Sheriff Nick Welden said: “Great job by all involved, getting this info and description out fast was definitely the factor in a fast apprehension. Thanks to Fort Payne Police Department for being super vigilant and detaining this subject before he had the opportunity to commit another crime. This also shows the importance in home security systems these days. What could have taken days, months or longer to make a case literally took minutes due to homeowners security methods. You can never be too prepared!”

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