Arrests in Connected BurglariesWritten by Theresa Rose on May 16, 2018
On May 14th, 2018 the Des Moines County Sheriff’s Office received a report of a burglary of a motor vehicle at a residence on 75th Avenue in rural Des Moines County. It was determined that the vehicle was broken into and a handgun was stolen. Through physical evidence located at the scene and other information obtained through the investigation, suspects and a suspect vehicle were identified.
The potential suspects were identified as being suspects in other active burglary investigations. The same victim of the reported burglary on 75th Avenue had also reported a burglary of his residence on 11-21-17. Several firearms including 2 shotguns and an SKS rifle were reported stolen during this burglary investigation.
On 11-8-17 a burglary of a residence was reported on Concord Drive in Burlington. Taken in this burglary were four handguns, one AK-47 rifle, and $50 cash.
The Des Moines County Sheriff’s Office and the Burlington Police Department Detectives were investigating these burglaries as potentially being connected due to both victims being members of a common church and the burglaries occurring during church services.
On 5-15-18 two of the suspects and the suspect vehicle were located at 909 S. 6th Street in Burlington. These suspects, identified as a 17-year-old male, and 17-year-old female, were interviewed. Both juvenile suspects admitted to committing the burglary of the vehicle at the residence on 75th Avenue on 5-13-18 and stealing the handgun. The juvenile male admitted to selling the stolen handgun later in Burlington.
On 5-15-18 Des Moines County Detectives located a third suspect, Kaleb Branton, 19 years old, at his residence in Burlington. In an interview at the Sheriff’s Office, Branton admitted to aiding in committing the burglary of the vehicle on 75th Avenue on 5-13-18 in which the handgun was stolen. Branton gave the juvenile male information on the location of the handgun, and communicated with the juvenile male about when the victim would be away from home.
Branton also admitted to committing the burglary of the residence on Concord Drive on 11-8-17 with another individual, adding that he believed they were at church and called the victim’s home phone before going to the house to make sure that they were not home. Branton stated that he kept one of the pistols taken in this burglary and later sold it to a subject in Burlington.
Branton also admitted to committing the burglary at the residence on 75th Avenue on 11-21-17 by himself, and stealing the firearms. Branton stated that he knew the victim would be at church and not at home at that time. Branton stated that he later sold these stolen firearms.
The 17-year-old male was charged with Burglary in the 3rd degree (vehicle), an aggravated misdemeanor, and Trafficking Stolen Weapons, a Class D Felony.
The 17-year-old female was charged with Burglary in the 3rd degree (vehicle), an aggravated misdemeanor.
Kaleb Branton was charged with 2 counts of Burglary in the 2nd Degree, both Class C felonies, 2 counts of Trafficking Stolen Weapons, both class D felonies, and Burglary in the 3rd Degree (vehicle), an aggravated misdemeanor.