One of two men suspected of attempting to fish deposits out of several bank nighttime drop boxes in Medford is in jail, police reported.
Ryan Daniel Kullrich, 38, of Bakersfield, Calif., is in the Jackson County Jail on two counts of second-degree burglary and two counts of attempted first-degree theft. His bail is set at $50,000, jail records show.
Police officials are calling Kullrich's arrest a lucky break, and they say the arrest may have put an end to a series of similar thefts in California and Oregon.
Video surveillance showed two white males driving a Buick Rendezvous with what looked like California plates. The theft attempts in Medford occurred at Umpqua Bank, 1211 E. McAndrews Road, and Peoples Bank, 1311 E. Barnett Road, police said.
Similar incidents were reported at several banks in Ukiah, Calif., with both men and the same vehicle appearing on surveillance footage.
Medford police have taken six reports of attempts by thieves to pilfer deposits from the outside drop boxes since Dec. 13. Central Point and Grants Pass police have been investigating similar thefts during that time period.
"I'm sure that this is just the tip of the iceberg," said Lt. Mike Budreau of Medford police. "The more we put the word out about the problems we're having, the more we're hearing back from other (law enforcement) agencies."
"In the Medford cases, (Kullrich) was not successful in any of them," Budreau said. The boxes are somewhat tamper-proof."
Investigators found Kullrich in the Buick at 10:35 p.m. Monday, parked in the Rogue Regency Inn parking lot. Police were responding to an unrelated theft that had just been reported when they spotted the car, which they recognized from the surveillance footage.
"You don't see a lot of that make and model around," Budreau said. "We suspected it had California plates."
Kullrich was inside the vehicle, and police confronted him with the surveillance images.
A second suspect is still being sought. Police declined to release the suspect's name.
"We still need to determine what his role was," Budreau said.
— Ryan Pfeil