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UPDATED: Unlocked Door Was Access in Fridley Home Invasion, Police Say

Authorities believe suspect or suspects took laptop, vehicle from residence in 5900 block of Main Street NE.

Update (5:15 p.m. Wednesday): Why didn't the Minnesota State Patrol help search for the suspect or suspects in the Fridley home invasion that police say happened early this morning on Main Street NE? The State Patrol chopper was a big part of a in the neighborhood near Medtronic's headquarters.

The answer, from Sgt. Curtis S. Mowers, State Patrol spokesperson:

I was told that the request came in and the pilot could not respond due to weather related conditions, or they would have responded. 

They do not know who said the word “busy” but that was not the case. 

This information came directly from our flight section.

Indeed, powerful storms were sweeping across the area in the wee hours of Wednesday— over the course of the morning.

Update (11:45 a.m. Wednesday): Fridley police said in a crime alert that an unlocked door gave an intruder or intruders the access they needed for a home invasion in the 5900 block of Main Street NE early this morning. 

According to the crime alert (see PDF), it appears:

"... the suspect(s) entered into an occupied residence through an unsecure kitchen door. The resident was awakened by muffled noise coming from ... within the home. The resident then discovered a male inside a bedroom. The two began to struggle and the suspect fled out the kitchen door. The resident believes there were possibly two suspects, although only one was observed."

The suspect got away with a Dell laptop computer and the resident's vehicle, according to police, who have given these descriptions of suspect and vehicle:

  • "Black Male in his 20's, Height 5'11" (no weight or clothing description available)"
  • "#UHN282 1998 Blue Ford F150"

The crime alert has safety tips ("Check doors and windows to make sure they are secure" is underlined) as well as a basic suspect description. Police ask that you call 9-1-1 if you have any information in connection with the incident. (Ask for a Fridley officer; anonymous tips accepted.)

The Fridley Police Department encourages residents to log identifying information about valuables to help police in case of a theft. (See PDFs for a brochure and sample inventory form.)

Update (10:55 a.m. Wednesday): Fridley Police Capt. Brian Weierke provided this update Wednesday morning via email:

Fridley Police responded to the 5900 Main St. of a burglary. The homeowner was sleeping and found a male (maybe two males) entered his unlocked residence. The suspects took a laptop computer and the homeowners vehicle (#UHN282 1998 Blue Ford F150).

Case still under investigation, it’s possibly related to the Alden Way incident.

Was a VCR taken?

No, the VCR/DVD players were moved but not stolen at this time, the homeowner is checking for anything that is missing and reporting to Detective.

Original post (5:55 a.m. Wednesday): Two suspects in a home invasion in Fridley took the victims' vehicle, police said early Wednesday morning, leading them to wind down a massive search within a local perimeter about 5 a.m. Wednesday.

At least four law-enforcement agencies helped Fridley police search for the suspects. The incident occurred between 3 a.m. and 4 a.m. Wednesday, according to Anoka County Emergency Dispatch, in the 5900 block of Main Street NE, across the street from Fridley Station on the Northstar Commuter Rail line.

No one who was at home during the incident was hurt, a dispatch supervisor said, and the suspects did not display weapons.

The dispatch supervisor confirmed reports from Twin Cities Incident Page that officers from Columbia Heights, Blaine and Coon Rapids assisted with the search. TCIP and Police Clips reported that K9 units from Blaine and Hennepin County were on the scene.

About an hour after the search began, authorities determined that the suspects had stolen a vehicle, a Ford F-150 pickup truck, from the house. At that point they released the police perimeter within which they had been searching.

No Helicopter, Unlike Last Time
Police asked the Minnesota State Patrol for assistance from its helicopter but the helicopter was not available.

That's different from an , when the State Patrol helicopter hovered over the neighborhood just north of Medtronic Parkway NE as officers with police dogs searched on foot. (One suspect was caught while the second got away.)

Near Site of Occupied Burglary Last Week
The residence where police said the home invasion happened Wednesday is about a quarter-mile southeast of a residence on Alden Way NE that burglars entered while residents were asleep at home four days ago. 

In that case, , the intruder or intruders entered an unlocked front door; stole a purse, wallet and credit cards; and apparently left in the victims' vehicle. 

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