News and Tribune

Clark County

October 29, 2012

Clarksville man faces charges in 5 area burglaries

Judge sets bond at $75,000

CLARK COUNTY — The Clarksville man who trapped himself inside of Gold’s Jewelry, Coins and Currency on Spring Street in downtown Jeffersonville last week — as police say he attempted to burglarize the business — now faces charges in five burglaries.

Ralph Thomas Beaver, 43, of 212 S. Clark Blvd., is believed to have gone on a 15-day burglary spree in Jeffersonville and Clarksville during which he broke into JC Cigarette Outlet on two occasions, a Save-A-Step and Centerstone, a counseling service. The crimes were committed between Aug. 17 and Aug. 31.

In three of the four incidents, video surveillance provided images of a suspect, believed by police to be Beaver, which proved key in identifying him.

Jeffersonville Police Department Detective Todd Hollis said there were similarities between all of the burglaries. Those commonalties include the type of clothing worn by the suspect while the crimes were committed, the time of day the break-ins occurred and how the businesses were broken into, which involved breaking the store-front windows with a hammer. Hollis also said the man in the varied surveillance videos had the same physical build.

Beaver is facing three charges of burglary, all class C felonies, for the first three incidents that took place between Aug. 17 and Aug. 26. The three crimes were committed without an immediate arrest.

Beaver was arrested after he was found at the scene of a burglary Aug. 31 which led to charges of burglary, a class B felony, and resisting law enforcement, a class D felony.

When Beaver appeared at a hearing in Clark County Circuit Court No. 1 on Sept. 5, Judge Daniel Moore set a bond of $15,000 court-cash.

Nearly two weeks later Sept. 18, a $1,500 bond was paid, and Beaver was released from the Michael L. Becher Adult Correctional Complex.

Less than a month later, on the night of Oct. 15, Jeffersonville police found Beaver trapped inside Gold’s Jewelry after he is believed by police to have entered the business through an access point on roof. He was arrested and charged with burglary, a class C felony.

On the morning of Oct. 16, Beaver was booked back into the jail where he remains.

During a hearing in Moore’s court Oct. 22, the $5,000 bond was revoked, and several days later the $1,500 that had been provided for his Sept. 18 release was returned to the party that provided the bond.

After revoking the initial bond, Moore set Beaver’s bond at $75,000 cash-only, which must be paid in full for his release.

Clark County Deputy Prosecutor Jake Elder applauded Moore’s decision to set the stiffer bond.

“I was very happy with Judge Moore revoking his bond,” Elder said. “It is always great to see a judge hold people accountable who are a risk to the community.”

Elder iterated that Beaver has not been convicted and deserves fair prosecution.

“He is innocent until proven guilty,” Elder said of Beaver. “But, with five pending cases, I was pleased with the $75,000 full-cash bond.”

Hollis said Beaver’s arrests were the result of open communication between area law enforcement agencies and the Clark County Prosecutor’s Office.

“I believe, certainly, a lot of businesses are safer now,” Hollis said of Beaver’s arrest. “Hopefully [Beaver] being caught and eventually prosecuted will keep the people and businesses of Clark County safer.”

Below is a look at the other break-ins

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