2 Arrested in NJ Police Chief Home Burglary

The entire incident was caught on tape.

By Brian Thompson
|  Thursday, Apr 14, 2011  |  Updated 9:42 AM EDT
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A burglar breaks into a police chief's house and is caught in the act by surveillance cameras.

A burglar breaks into a police chief's house and is caught in the act by surveillance cameras.

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Video Catches Thief Breaking into Police Chief's Home

A thief breaks into a New Jersey police chief's home -- and his entry is caught on tape.
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Police arrested two individuals Wednesday night in connection with the burglary of a New Jersey police chief's home. The chief recently had video cameras installed in his home and the break-in was caught on tape.

Toms River police announced the arrests of the two suspects Thursday morning. No details about their identities were immediately available. Police said some allegedly stolen items were recovered from the suspects.

Toms River Police Chief Michael Mastronardy captured the burglary on video with the $1,000 three-camera video system he recently purchased.

The video shows the burglar walking down the driveway, forcing open a window on the side of the house and climbing into the chief's home office.

"We have solved so many more crimes as a result of video technology that's been installed in residences or businesses in our town," Mastronardy told NBC New York on Wednesday while touting the new technology.

He believes video systems are superior to burglar alarms. In many cases, officers respond to scenes where the burglar, if it is a real alarm, is long gone.

The alarm industry disagrees.

"That's gonna deter the burglar ... with the sirens going off," said Lewis Voight, president of Securall Monitoring Corporation. He added that he has seen many cases where a burglary was prevented because the alarm went off.

At Mastronardy's house, the suspect fled out the front door as his wife pulled up.

Asked if he ever thought his home would be burglarized, the chief said he thinks "the potential is there for everyone."

Mastronardy wasn't the only law enforcement officer victimized by a burglar.

He says a retired police chief from Seaside Park who lives nearby also was burglarized.

Follow Brian Thompson on Twitter @brian4NY

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