Police bust alleged Eagle burglar | VailDaily.com

Police bust alleged Eagle burglar

Daniel Lewis Arment

EAGLE, Colorado – An Eagle man’s Facebook friends helped police find and arrest him as an alleged serial burglar.

Police arrested Daniel Lewis Arment in a Boulder hotel bar on New Year’s Eve. He had colored his hair from brown to red, to keep him from being found. It didn’t help.

Arment is suspected in as many as five December burglaries in Eagle. He allegedly robbed the Eagle Pharmacy and Nearly Everything Store, as well as private residences, stealing items such as jewelry, watches, prescription medication, computers and electronic items.

“The burglaries were all in December that we are aware of,” said Sgt. Gordon Chicoine with the Eagle Police Department, who helped lead the investigation.

Police are still investigating whether Arment might be the burglar that has been robbing Vail Village businesses since last July, but right now it does not appear so, police say.

In one of the last documented Eagle burglaries, the victim homeowner arrived home and surprised the burglar in the act. As the homeowner backed out of the home and called police, the homeowner grabbed a bag the burglar had left near the front door.

In the bag were items with Arment’s name on them, police said.

Eagle police already had Arment’s photo from the video of an unrelated burglary. They released Arment’s photo to the media through the Crimestoppers Tipsline, and callers led them to Arment’s house in Eagle.

Police obtained a search warrant and on Dec. 27 searched Arment’s house, recovering several items reported stolen in other Eagle burglaries.

On Dec. 28, Eagle police obtained an arrest warrant for Arment, and Vail and Avon detectives joined the search.

At the same time, Chicoine sent messages to Arment’s Facebook friends, using it as a conduit to tell them all about the search and the arrest warrants.

“It’s no different from regular police work. You find as many friends, family and acquaintances as you can,” Chicoine said.

It didn’t take long for information to start rolling in.

“We had several tips and an informant who came in,” Chicoine said. “That led us to him from 150 miles away.”

Eagle police quickly learned that Arment may have fled Eagle County and might be in the Westminster/Boulder area. The Eagle police contacted the Boulder police, who also joined the search.

One person and one thing led to another and before long the net tightened around Arment in a hotel bar in Boulder.

Just before midnight on New Year’s Eve, the Boulder police department’s Target Crime Team strolled through the bar under the guise of doing a random ID check, Chicoine said, but they knew exactly who they were after.

“He didn’t present his ID at first. He knew he had a warrant,” Chicoine said.

Arment initially denied his identity. When faced with his very own picture by the detectives, Arment eventually admitted who he was, Chicoine said.

When police searched Arment’s hotel room in Boulder, they found more stolen property from other burglaries he allegedly pulled, one an unreported burglary in Eagle before Arment left town.

“When he was taken into custody, he was found with a stolen iPod,” Chicoine said. “The owner had been looking for it for a couple weeks.”

Eagle Police detectives drove to Boulder to take custody of Arment who, during questioning, confessed some of his burglary activity. Officers are currently working on getting property back to the rightful owners, Chicoine said.

Arment is in the Eagle County Jail. He is being investigated for more than seven felonies, including burglary, theft, possession of stolen property, identity theft, and possession of burglary tools.

“The Eagle Police Department is very thankful for the help of its citizens, the detectives from the Vail and Avon Police Departments, as well as the Boulder Police Department who assisted in bringing the search for Arment to a positive and peaceful conclusion,” Chicoine said.

Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 or rwyrick@vaildaily.com

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