Natrona County law enforcement has arrested multiple individuals connected to a recent string of dangerous crimes in our community.
The partnership between these agencies allowed for this crime spree to come to a peaceful end. It is with this seamless communication and sharing of information and ideas between agencies, that criminals in Natrona County are found, charged and put behind bars. There is no room for career criminals in our community.
The investigation into the connection of recent crimes began this week by the Casper Police Department. The investigation was launched to look into a connection between multiple similar crimes happening in Natrona County.
Over the course of four days, the Casper Police Department, Natrona County Sheriff’s Office, Mills Police Department, Evansville Police Department and Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigations worked together to identify recently reported crimes, review evidence and investigate connections.
The reported and related in nature crimes consisted of eighteen auto burglaries, six stolen vehicles, one robbery, multiple instances of unauthorized uses of a credit card, seven stolen loaded guns, illegal drugs, and aggravated burglaries. Law enforcement does believe the suspects are related to multiple other, potentially unreported, crimes that have occurred recently within our community. All of the reported stolen vehicles have been recovered. Three of the guns have been confirmed as stolen, four are suspected of being stolen.
All of these crimes took place in Natrona County. In most instances, the suspects were burglarizing and stealing vehicles parked in home owner’s driveways that were either unlocked or had valuables and guns in plain view.
On October 23rd, 2019 one adult suspect was arrested in connection to these crimes.
On October 24th, 2019, an additional suspect fled in a vehicle while officers attempted an arrest. This suspect and an additional person of interest blatantly disobeyed traffic signals and completely disregarded human life by forcing officers to pursue. The suspect vehicle ultimately crashed. Both occupants of the vehicle were taken to the hospital with minor non-life threatening injuries. Once released, they were interviewed and taken into custody. No officers or other citizens were injured as a result of this incident.
Two additional adult suspects were also arrested on October 24th, 2019 in relation to these crimes.
The Natrona County law enforcement agencies involved in this extremely successful investigation and operation have worked tirelessly over the last four days to solve these crimes. Many nights were spent away from their families to ensure the families of all Natrona County residents were safe.
While the suspects are responsible for the crimes they committed, several of the crimes in this case could have been prevented.
These suspects admitted to walking around neighborhoods and testing car door handles to find easy targets to burglarize. They admitted to looking for valuables through car windows. They admitted to walking away from vehicles that were locked and had nothing of value visible.
“We need our community to hear us when we say, ‘We need your help,’” said Casper Police Detective Anthony Stedillie. “Lock your cars. Bring valuables inside. These criminals are looking for opportunities to burglarize our community. Don’t let them.”
We are also urging residents to inventory your firearms, write down the serial numbers and keep that information separate and in a safe location. This information extraordinarily helps law enforcement when firearms are stolen.
These suspects have also admitted to selling the items they burglarized and using stolen credit cards. If you believe to be in possession of stolen property or your credit card has been fraudulently used, please contact law enforcement.
If you are missing property, to include firearms, please contact law enforcement immediately to report it. Criminals steal guns to commit crimes. Do not give them that opportunity.
“The suspects in this case have proven to law enforcement and our community that they have a deliberate disregard for safety, human life, the laws that govern us and the overall wellbeing of our community,” said Casper Police Investigations Lieutenant Ben Mattila. “Our responsibility as a community is to not empower these criminals. Your Natrona County law enforcement partners are here to serve and support, but we need your help.”
The suspects arrested are as follows:
Jason Jennings: 25-year-old male, charged with one felony count of robbery, four felony counts of aggravated burglary, three felony counts of burglary, six misdemeanor counts of unauthorized use of a motor vehicle and one felony count of unlawful use of a credit card.
Kristopher Hodgins: 32-year-old male, charged with one count of felony aggravated burglary, one count of felony burglary, one felony count of wrongful taking or concealing of stolen property, one misdemeanor count of possession of a controlled substance – methamphetamine and one felony count of conspiracy.
Keith Crakaal: 27-year-old male, charged with one felony count of aggravated burglary, one misdemeanor count of taking or concealing of stolen property and one felony count of conspiracy.
Megann Holzer: 22-year-old female, charged with one felony count of fleeing or attempting to elude police officers, one felony count of accessory after the fact – aggravated burglary, and one misdemeanor count of reckless driving.
Danielle Rickert: 24-year-old female, charged with one felony count of unlawful use of a credit card, one misdemeanor count of possession of a controlled substance – methamphetamine, and one misdemeanor count of possession of a controlled substance – marijuana.
This is an active and ongoing investigation. More information will be released as it becomes available.
We would like to thank the Natrona County Sherriff’s Office, Evansville Police Department, Mills Police Department and Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigations for their assistance with this case.
The Casper Police Department is looking for information on this crime. If you have any information, please contact the Casper Police Department at (307) 235-8278 or you can make an anonymous tip through CrimeStoppers of Central Wyoming by calling (307) 577-8477 or online at crime-stoppers.com.
The Casper Police Department is dedicated to the protection and safety of our community through the highest standards of professionalism in police services.