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South Passaic Daily Voice serves Clifton, Haledon, Hawthorne, Little Falls, North Haledon, Passaic, Paterson, Prospect Park, Totowa, Wayne & Woodland Park

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Wayne PD: Church-Area Car Burglar Seen In Video Is Caught

Wayne police released surveillance video of a man suspected in a series of car burglaries -- some while congregants gathered inside houses of worship.
Wayne police released surveillance video of a man suspected in a series of car burglaries -- some while congregants gathered inside houses of worship. Video Credit: Daily Voice Passaic County
Isaiah C Samuel
Isaiah C Samuel Photo Credit: MUGSHOT: Courtesy WAYNE PD

WAYNE, N.J. -- A 22-year-old Wayne man confronted by a woman whose husband's cellphone had been stolen is the one seen in surveillance video following a series of car burglaries in and around the parking lot of a local church, authorities said Friday.

Isaiah C. Samuel was confronted by the woman on Ratzer Road early Wednesday after she traced her husband's stolen iPhone with a special app, Capt. Laurence Martin said.

He ran but was quickly caught by township police, Martin said.

Samuel ws carrying a debit card belonging to a victim whose car was broken into at the Ratzer Road YMCA on April 11, the captain said.

Two days later, Wayne police released a video ( above ) in an attempt to identify a car burglar who struck in and around the parking lot of Our Lady of the Valley Roman Catholic Church during Sunday services.

The thief "walks though the lot stopping at cars momentarily," Martin said at the time. "It appears he is electronically manipulating the car locks with some unseen device.

"Once inside the vehicle he steals money, credit cards and then locks the door again."

On April 16, the same thief broke into vehicles in the Hinchman Avenue apartment complex, stealing about $1000 in cash, they said.

Officers arrested Samuel that same day for pot possession in the A&P parking lot across from the municipal building, Martin said.

Samuel remained held in the Passaic County Jail pending a detention hearing. He's charged with receiving stolen property and credit card theft, although an investigation was continuing.

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