OLYMPIA - Olympia police tracked a vehicle used in the theft of 32 cartons of cigarettes worth about $2,145 from the Cooper Point Road Chevron to a G Street address in Tumwater.
One of the suspects at the G Street residence Monday night, Justin Thierjung, 21, was smoking a cigarette when police arrived. Inside, police found a freshly opened pack of Marlboros – one of the brands reported stolen Monday.
Inside the home, investigating Olympia police Officer Duanne Hinrichs later found 17 of the 34 cigarette cartons that had been stolen. The others are unaccounted for, court papers state.
Thierjung and his alleged accomplice, Jonathan Michael Dice, 20, were each charged Wednesday with one count of second-degree theft.
Never miss a local story.
When Thierjung contacted Dice, Dice showed Hinrichs where he had put some of the cartons in various locations in the home, court papers state.
According to court papers:
The owner of the Chevron told police he had just returned from buying cartons of cigarettes from Costco. As he was unloading the vehicle at the Chevron, “a white male described as in his late teens or early 20s grabbed a box containing 32 cartons of cigarettes out of the open hatch of his vehicle and jumped into a grey Ford Expedition that was at the gas island.”
The car then sped away. Olympia police Officer Jim Black, reading from a police report, said Friday that the store owner was able to write down the license plate number.
Hinrichs reviewed video surveillance at the Chevron that showed the theft. He later traced the vehicle’s registered address to G Street in Tumwater.
Two women were in the vehicle at the time of the theft; they were not arrested. However, one gave police several cartons of stolen cigarettes from her backpack.
One of the women who was in the back of the vehicle told Hinrich that after Thierjung got in the Expedition after taking the cigarettes, he “told Dice to go, go, go.”
Police haven’t found a third man who was in the vehicle.
Black said the stolen cigarette brands included Marlboro, American Spirit, Camel, Basic, Parliament Light and Virginia Slim.
As of Friday, Dice had bailed out of the Thurston County Jail. Thierjung was being held at the jail with bail set at $7,500.
Both are scheduled to be arraigned July 6 in Thurston County Superior Court.
Jeremy Pawloski: 360-754-5465 email@example.com