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You’ll never know what led cops directly to a burglary spree suspect

Photo Credit: Cliffview Pilot

He lived among them, which is part of what made the spree of break-ins at their homes so creepy. But a little-known fact about one of the stolen items led police directly to a home where, they said, they found all of valuables taken during a burglary spree that troubled New Milford residents so much that they regularly phoned in information they hoped would help the investigation.

John Cavas

A unit of patrol officers and investigators from New Milford and River Edge raided a borough residence around 6:30 Friday morning and found jewelry, personal computers, handbags, electronic devices and a firearm — all believed stolen in town.

Detectives have signed several complaints for burglary and receiving stolen property against 29-year-old John Cavas, who lives there, said Police Chief Frank Papapietro. Cavas is being held on $150,000 bail in the Bergen County Jail.

The secret to what led them there could be found among the stolen items, but to reveal that detail could give other burglars an edge — and that’s never going to happen here.

“It was just an outstanding job by the detectives and the patrol officers,” said Papapietro, who put extra uniformed police into the bureau Friday morning for the raid. “Nobody’s happier than I am right now.”

Papapietro also singled out residents, many of whom phoned in whatever information they could provide — including the spotting of a maroon car — in an effort to help nab the burglar.

“I appreciate their patience,” the chief said. “It takes awhile in these instances to put together the pieces so that the case will stand up in court.

Over the next week, detectives will be calling victims of several break-ins to come to headquarters and identify their valuables, he said.

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