Boise Police Department
News Release

Michael F. Masterson
Chief of Police


Contact: Lynn Hightower
Communications Director
570-6180

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Increase in Lap Top Thefts, One Man Arrested

Increase in Lap Top Thefts, One Man Arrested

Boise, June 7, 2006, 8:45 a.m. -- Boise Police have arrested a man they believe is connected to a series of stolen lap tops in the city.

Since January, Boise has seen an increase in the number of reported lap tops stolen.  Detectives are continuing to investigate, but believe that the same person may be responsible for many of the thefts.

    Arrested:  Adam Grossaint, 21 of Boise

    Charges:  4 counts Burglary, Grant Theft (more charges are possible)

Grossaint is accused of stealing lap top computers form several Boise small businesses.  In many of the cases, detectives say the thief broke out a glass door or window and stole the lap tops as they sat on desks.  In many cases, more than one computer was taken from each small business.  Besides actual replacement costs, the loss to the small businesses victimized in terms of time and data lost cannot be measured.

Grossaint is accused in 4 burglaries, but detectives say he is a suspect in at least 18 more.

Background:  In January, Boise Police identified an increase in lap top thefts.  Between January and May, 36 reports of stolen lap tops had been taken by BPD, mainly from small businesses.  The computers were stolen during the night or on weekends.

After some investigation, Detectives developed leads on a possible suspect.  Patrol arrested the suspect, Grossaint, after he was found to be driving without privileges.  Grossaint was later found to be in possession of two stolen lap tops.  Boise Police Detectives have evidence they believe links Grossaint to four burglaries, and possibly at least 18 more.

Detectives say it appears the lap tops were stolen then re-sold for meth or money, often pennies on the dollar of what the computers are worth.

Detectives say it appears the thieves often "scout" the businesses looking through windows or glass doors for computers in plain view.

Officers have these tips for citizens to keep from falling victim to lap top theft:

  • Install a locator or tracking device on your lap top (several services are offered for a nominal yearly fee - check online.  These are installed on your hard drive and cannot be erased.)
  • Know the serial number on lap tops and other valuables so police can find you if the items are stolen.
  • After hours, close blinds on windows and glass doors.
  • Keep areas well lit at night to deter prowlers.
  • Be alert to anyone hanging around the premises who appears to be trying to peer inside.
  • Install audible alarms and video surveillance.