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Rexburg Police arrest burglary suspect

UPDATE 10/11/17: Rexburg Police arrested Robert James Mathews, 28, of Washington state at a house on Webster Avenue Wednesday in connection with a break-in at Smart Cents Auto.

Captain Randy Lewis said police developed information that identified Mathews as a suspect and obtained a search warrant for his home.

Police served the warrant at around 1 p.m. Wednesday, but Mathews barricaded himself in the house. Lewis said police could hear a young baby crying inside the house.

He was convinced to leave the house peacefully at about 2:20 p.m. Several items believed to have been taken in the burglary were found.

Police said the baby was safe and its mother returned to the home shortly after his arrest.

Mathews is being held in the Madison County jail on multiple charges, including 3 counts of joy-riding, grand theft of a $4,000 bicycle, malicious injury to property and other charges.

Lewis said the suspect had an extensive criminal history in Washington state.


Rexburg Police want to question a suspect about the theft of 3 vehicles and vandalism at Smart Cent Auto at 250 West Main Street.

Police think a suspect rode into the car lot on a stolen bicycle sometime between 12:30 a.m. and 3:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Three used vehicles and keys to several others were reported missing from the lot at around 10:30 a.m. One vehicle had a cinder block thrown through the side window. Other vehicles were moved around the lot.

Police said the office building, where keys were kept, had been broken into. No other items were stolen.

A suspect was caught on video riding a bike into the business. The bicycle was found to have been stolen.

Police found the missing three vehicles parked a few blocks away, along with the keys to the other vehicles.

Investigators believe a single person was responsible for the crime. Video and other evidence is being reviewed and processed.

Anyone with information is encouraged to contact Rexburg Police at 208-359-3008.

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