By Michael Johnson
January 19, 2018
HOLBROOK — The Navajo County Sheriff’s Office (NCSO) is using the internet to help burglary victims recover their stolen property.
NCSO is using a service called LeadsOnline, an online investigation system used by law enforcement departments locally, statewide and nationally. It’s a property tracking system that documents and reports items that are pawned and sold or transferred at multiple pawn shops throughout Navajo County, the State of Arizona and the Nation.
NCSO officials said they began using LeadsOnline in February 2010. The program was purchased and shared with all law enforcement agencies in Navajo County.
“This is an outstanding program. Utilized correctly, it is an extremely valuable tool for all law enforcement agencies in Navajo County,” said Sheriff K.C. Clark.
During the past several months, Clark says deputies have recovered “thousands of dollars worth of stolen property” by using the LeadsOnline technology.
On Jan. 8, for example, NCSO officials say they recovered a Rolex watch with an appraisal value of $34,000. The watch was photographed, documented and returned to its owner, who NCSO did not identify.
Deputies investigating a burglary at a business west of Snowflake used LeadsOnline to ID a suspect and recover several stolen pieces of property. Chief Deputy R.D. Moffitt said that suspect, who has not yet been publicly named because there are additional arrests pending, allegedly admitted to his involvement.
The system also helped deputies find additional stolen property, including $71,000 worth of computer and software equipment that the Snowflake business uses to run its machinery.
Not only is it useful in getting stolen property back to its rightful owner, but LeadsOnline, he said, is the link between investigators and missing items or individuals who may turn out to be instrumental in solving a homicide.
“It is truly a proud moment for that deputy, officer or detective when he or she can contact the victims of a theft or burglary and advise them that their stolen property has been recovered and the suspect identified, and his or her arrest is pending,” Clark said.