UPDATE: Two men arrested in connection to a string of break ins in Terra Alta

A recent break-in at a local business in Preston county has the community worried for their safety.
A recent break-in at a local business in Preston county has the community worried for their safety.(WDTV)
Published: Dec. 7, 2019 at 10:54 AM EST
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UPDATE 12/13/19 @ 5:24 p.m.

Two Preston County men were arrested in connection to the string of break-ins in Terra Alta.

Joshua Reckart, 32, and Robert Powell, 29, were arrested. Reckart was charged with grand larceny and breaking and entering. Powell was charged with breaking and entering and conspiracy.

According to the criminal complaint, deputies responded to three businesses in reference to the break-ins. The owners of each business said something was stolen.

Deputies got video footage of the incidents.

The men are seen breaking into Ball Auto Auction and taking a dollar from the business, according to deputies.

Reckart and Powell are seen breaking into Delano’s Carpet, deputies said. They took a 32-inch TV, bib overalls and a half case of Nutrisystem.

According to court documents, Reckart is seen on video footage breaking into the Laundry Basket.

Deputies say Reckart breaks into the building and goes to where the dollar bill changer was. He took the bill changer.

Deputies learned through their investigation that a female family member of Powell was able to identify them.

Powell spoke with deputies, according to court documents. He spoke with them briefly before asking for an attorney.

Deputies got a search warrant for Powell’s home. They found several items that were stolen in the home.

Powell and Reckart are being held at Tygart Valley Regional Jail.


Last Thursday, two people broke into Ball Auto Auction in Terra Alta damaging property and going through personal items in the office.

"They ransacked my desk, they went through personal items, our coat pockets, they knocked over our brand new computers, and in the end they only found a dollar," said Brittany Dixon.

Dixon believes the suspects were looking for a safe in her office. Dixon says there have been several break ins in Terra Alta within the past 2 weeks. Without a police department in the town, residents are concerned for their safety.

Dixon and Funk say Terra Alta says the town has had more crime within the past two months than it has in several years . Both say a police presence is needed.

"Our safety needs to be higher up, it should be number one," Funk said.

Both say if the town has an officer and more patrolling, the criminal activity would decrease .

"We have to have nights and weekends," Funk said. "Always at night and I feel like if we had a police presence, a lot of it would stop."

Dixon says the county sheriffs department is investigating the break-in saying she is thankful for what they have done, but says they can't always be present in Terra Alta.

"They've been doing drive-by's, checking on the local businesses and that is a nice piece of mind to have," Dixon said.

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