June 28, 2016

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Police used cell phone left at crime scene to track accused trespasser

BRUNSWICK — A man was arrested on charges of theft and trespassing in Brunswick’s industrial park after police tracked him down from a cell phone he left behind.

Robert T. Graninger, 23, whose address was not listed in police reports, was arrested at 11:01 a.m. Monday as he walked along Pearl Road.

According to police reports, an investigation tied Graninger to a theft of about $1,000 in scrap metal from a business in the 1200 block of Industrial Parkway.

The report said a company called police to report scrap metal was taken from a trash bin on April 24. Police searched the area and found a cell phone and tracks from a vehicle. Police looked at the cell phone contacts and called one listed as “Grandma.” The woman who answered the phone told police the cell phone belonged to her granddaughter, but her granddaughter had given it to her boyfriend, Graninger, to use.

Before police could contact Graninger, he showed up at the Brunswick police station on Center Road and told officers he got a call that his phone had been found. Police questioned whether Graninger had been at the industrial park and he replied that he had not. He used a racist slur to describe the man he claimed stole his phone while he was sleeping.

After speaking with Graninger, police then went to Decco Alloys, a metal recycling facility in Brunswick, and checked surveillance tapes. The tapes showed Graninger turning in sheets of scrap metal that measured 36 inches by 1 inch — matching the description of the metal reported stolen.

They took the images back to the company that reported the theft and it was confirmed the metal was the same shape and size as the metal stolen from their facility.

According to earlier arrest records, Graninger pleaded guilty to receiving stolen property in 2012, and has pleaded guilty to minor alcohol-related charges including underage possession and disorderly conduct in 2010 and 2011.

Contact reporter Loren Genson at (330) 721-4063 or lgenson@medina-gazette.com. Follow her on Twitter @lorengenson.

Loren Genson About Loren Genson

Loren Genson was The Gazette's senior reporter. From August 2012 through September 2015, she covered Brunswick city and state and national government. To contact The Gazette, call the managing editor at (330) 721-4065.