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Home invasion suspects nabbed

Footprints in the snow led Lawrence County sheriff’s deputies to two men accused of breaking into the home of a South Point man early Monday morning.

Tuesday, January 08, 2002

Footprints in the snow led Lawrence County sheriff’s deputies to two men accused of breaking into the home of a South Point man early Monday morning.

Douglas Smith II, 21, and Andy Travis, 18, both of South Point, are being held in the Lawrence County Jail in connection with the break-in. Both appeared in Lawrence County Municipal Court in Chesapeake Monday and a preliminary hearing was set for Monday, Jan. 14 at 10 a.m.

According to reports, the two are accused of forcibly entering the home of a 50-year-old male, assaulting him and stealing jewelry. The man was asleep when the suspects allegedly broke in the home and was the only person at the residence. Sheriff Tim Sexton said the man was injured as a result of the assault, but the injuries appear to be minor.

"As far as we know, the victim did not receive serious injuries," Sexton said, but added he was expected to seek medical attention Monday.

Sexton said deputies were dispatched to the residence on Township Road 1019 at 1:52 a.m. Monday. Upon arrival, officers found a window had been broken and the suspects unlocked a door to enter the home. Sexton said deputies observed two sets of footprints in the snow and began to track the suspects from the crime scene to a nearby residence.

At that residence, officers took Smith and Travis into custody after they were interviewed and some of the items taken from the victim’s home were found in their possession.

"This was a very serious crime and the officers did a very good job of investigating and making the arrest," Sexton said. "They did a good job of noticing the footprints in the snow."

Sexton said the sheriff’s office will pursue charges of aggravated burglary – a first-degree felony, felonious assault – a second-degree felony, and theft – a fourth-degree felony. He added there is a "good chance" the case will be presented to an upcoming session of the Lawrence County Grand Jury.