Pennsylvania Man Arrested for Burglary at Indiana Police Lodge, Stole from Fallen Officer Fund

Key Takeaways:
– Jerome T. Johnson has been arrested for burglary at Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #78 in Kokomo, Indiana.
– The burglarized lodge contained a donation fund established in memory of the late Deputy Carl Koontz.
– Police believe two others might have been involved in the burglary and are seeking public assistance for any additional information.

A man from Pennsylvania, Jerome T. Johnson, has been arrested for burglarizing the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) Lodge in Kokomo, Indiana. According to a press release from the Kokomo Police Department, among the stolen items was cash from a fund dedicated to a late officer, Carl Koontz.

Discovering the Culprit

Officers responded to an interior burglary alarm at the FOP Lodge #78, located at 102 W. Markland Avenue, on March 31, 2024, around 9:05 pm. Forced entry was evident inside the building, the police communication read. As the investigation transpired, the officers discovered the 22-year-old Johnson hiding inside the premise.

The press release pointed out that Johnson has been arrested and charged with Burglary, a Level 5 Felony, pertaining to the incident.

Pilferage from the Lodge

Further scrutiny by the officers revealed that a sum of cash, collected in memory of the fallen Howard County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Carl Koontz, was missing from inside the lodge. Moreover, the building interior had undergone significant damage.

According to the police reports, it is highly probable that Johnson had accomplices during the burglary event. Two other individuals, believed to be part of this unlawful act, had left the scene by the time police arrived.

Seeking Public Help||Deputy Carl Koontz

In an appeal for public assistance, the Kokomo Police urged anybody with relevant information to come forward. The press release shared various contact avenues, including anonymized tip-off platforms, to facilitate these potential informants.

Deputy Koontz was killed in the line of duty back in 2016 while serving drug-related warrants, as reported on the Indiana Law Enforcement Memorial website. Tragically, he was shot after entering a trailer park home in Russiaville where he received no response.

Despite undergoing surgery, Koontz died from his injuries. His legacy left behind includes service as a corrections officer and crossing the line of duty as a loving husband and father to an 8-month-old son. The stolen fund at the FOP Lodge was a testament to the respect and honor for his sacrifice.

The involvement of two other individuals in the burglary underscores the complexity of the case, and the Kokomo Police are resolute in tracking them down. The pilferage from the fund dedicated to honoring a fallen officer underscores the gravity of the crime committed.

This series of events serves as yet another reminder of the many challenges law enforcement faces, even in unprecedented arenas. It also emphasizes the importance of public vigilance and collective responsibility in tackling such issues.

As the investigation unfolds and search for the other suspects continues, it’s a stern reminder of the respect that must be upheld for those who put their lives at risk in the line of law enforcement. The public’s assistance provides a crucial role in solving this crime and ensuring justice for all victims involved.