SALEM – A wheelbarrow-pushing serial burglar has been targeting vacation homes and vacant homes for sale in the Detroit Lake area, deputies said.
The burglar is not only breaking into the homes, but in some cases, he’s living in them for days at a time, according to officer Don Thomson with the Marion County Sheriff’s Office.
Then, the burglar uses a wheelbarrow to cart items out of the homes and steal them, Thomson said.
“Entry is gained by prying doors and breaking windows. The burglar targets homes without alarm systems,” he added. “While staying in the houses, the burglar makes himself comfortable, showering, eating food and drinking liquor he finds stored there.”
Camping gear, blankets, clothing and food were stolen from the homes and at least 6 cases have been linked, investigators said.
In one of the cases, the homeowner discovered the suspect sleeping in the master bedroom and managed to snap a cell phone photo as he fled. (See photo above, right.)
Investigators have identified the suspect as Billie Jo Shrader, 33, a transient with a criminal record.
He is described as standing about 5-foot-9-inches tall, weighing around 190 pounds, with brown hair, brown eyes and a full beard. Shrader has a criminal record for burglary and trespassing, and is wanted in Curry County for a Parole Violation. (Previous police mug shot photo above, left.)
Anyone with information that may help investigators was urged to call the Marion County Sheriff's Office at 503.932.8002 or send an email to Sr. Deputy Shawn Bush.