Suspect in Lakewood break-ins previously convicted of stealing from same church

LAKEWOOD, Ohio-- A string of break-ins at local businesses and a church has apparently come to an end.

Lakewood police said they arrested a man, who FOX 8 learned has been convicted of many similar crimes dating back nearly 30 years.

James A. Reardon, 49, of Lakewood, has been convicted for theft and drug-related crimes as far back as 1989.  He was just released from prison after serving time for breaking into a church that he is now charged with breaking into again.

Reardon faces several charges of breaking and entering in connection with recent crimes.

In March 2014, he was sentenced to five years in prison for stealing from two Lakewood churches, including Gethsemane Lutheran Church on Madison Avenue. A year later, he was re-sentenced to four years behind bars.

Now, Lakewood police said they were called to the same church after someone discovered a break-in through a basement window last Tuesday morning.
Police said tips led them to Reardon.

Just before 4 a.m. that same day, police responded to a burglar alarm at the Black Sheep Boutique on Carabel Avenue near Madison Avenue. They said they believe Reardon broke the front door glass and went inside, but left after seeing that the cash register was empty.

Fifteen minutes later, officers then responded to an alarm at Cleveland Vegan on Detroit Avenue. Again, they said they believe Reardon broke the front door glass and stole money from the business. Investigators said Reardon hit the same restaurant on Nov. 28 by breaking through the glass front door, also stealing money.

Nearby businesses had been on alert after the recent burglaries and one business owner told FOX 8 that he is now relieved.

Reardon is being held in the Lakewood City Jail.

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