News and Tribune

December 23, 2013

Anonymous tip leads to arrest in New Albany

Police get help in burglary at Discount Tobacco and Deli

By GARY POPP
gary.popp@newsandtribune.com

NEW ALBANY — Thanks to a tip from an anonymous source, New Albany police were able to arrest a man who admitted to burglarizing a business two days earlier.

Last Thursday, a neighbor of Discount Tobacco and Deli, formerly Little Tiger Food Mart, called authorities to report a burglary in progress at the Charlestown Road business.

The woman reported observing through the window of her home a man, later identified as Nicholas James Hockman, 23, of East Seventh Street in New Albany, climbing out of the business through a drive-thru window.

She reported to police Hockman also left the business with a plastic trash bag and a backpack before walking away on foot.

Police responded to the scene and received Hockman’s description and his direction of travel from the woman, but he was not located during a check of the area.

The business owner also responded to the scene and reported to police that several cartons of cigarettes, cash and a checkbook had been stolen.

Two days later, on Saturday, a New Albany police officer was flagged down by an anonymous person who said she had information on the recent burglary at Discount Tobacco and Deli.

The person identified Hockman as the person who committed the robbery and that he was seen with the stolen checkbook about 10 minutes earlier at his home. Police responded to the home and made contact with Hockman. While performing a pat down, Hockman was asked about an object in his pants’ pocket.

Hockman said the item was his checkbook, but it was found to be the checkbook belonging to the Discount Tobacco and Deli.

He was then taken to the New Albany Police Department for questioning. While there, Hockman told police the had been walking home from a friend’s house two days earlier and thrown a rock through a window of the Charlestown Road business. He said, according to the police report, that no alarm was activated, so he crawled through the window and took cash, a checkbook, cigarettes and a credit card machine.

Hockman has been charged in a Floyd County court with class C felony burglary and class D felony theft.

A pretrial conference has been scheduled for Feb. 4.