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Police: One-man Manchester-area crime wave found under blanket
A local couch-surfer identified by scabs on his face and tattoos covering his arms is behind a one-man, one-day crime spree in Manchester Township, according to police allegations.
Gregory Allen Fink, 28, no listed address, has now traded his friend's couch for a prison cot.
Police allege he even stole a man's boxer shorts and was wearing them when he was arrested.
Fink is in York County Prison on $70,000 bail, charged with burglary, criminal trespass, theft of a motor vehicle, retail theft and theft from a vehicle, according to court records.
Police arrested him Thursday, Aug. 2, after finding him hiding under a blanket in the North York home of a friend, charging documents state.
Fink's alleged crime wave began the morning of Wednesday, Aug. 1, according to police.
About 7:45 a.m., Northern York County Regional Police were called to a home on Bruaw Drive in Manchester Township for a burglary in progress, according to police.
A man who lives in the home heard a noise in his basement and found an intruder there, wearing blue boxer shorts, brown work boots and a gray T-shirt, police said.
Under the influence? The resident also reported that the intruder appeared to be under the influence of drugs and had scabs on his face, documents state.
The intruder ran out the home's front door after being confronted by the resident.
Police said the burglar got inside by breaking a basement window, then piled items from the home near the window. It's believed he planned to steal those items, including a set of car keys, a guitar and a hard drive, charging documents state.
Officers were still driving around the area trying to find the burglar when, at 9:02 a.m., they were dispatched to the Speedway gas station and convenience store at 3311 N. George St. in Emigsville.
The store is less than a mile from the home that was broken into, police said.
Workers there reported that a man with a scabby face and tattoos shoplifted about $7 worth of food and drink, police said.
He was seen getting coffee and taking a prepackaged sandwich and a quart of chocolate milk into a restroom with him, then came out 10 minutes later and left the store, documents state.
Ran into woods: A Speedway employee followed him in her vehicle, heading east on Emig Road. Police said she lost sight of him when he ran into a wooded area about 200 yards away from the convenience store.
Officers searched the wooded area and found a coffee-cup lid believed to be from a recently poured cup of coffee at Speedway, police said.
An empty chocolate milk container was found in the bathroom that the shoplifter used, police said.
Two hours later, at 11:02 a.m., 911 dispatchers alerted Northern Regional officers to a theft of a vehicle from a business in the 300 block of Emig Road. That business is four-tenths of a mile from the Speedway, according to police.
Someone stole a 2016 Ford Flex from the parking lot, police said; the owner had left the keys in the vehicle. The car thief also went through another vehicle and stole two credit cards from inside, documents state.
Witnesses who saw the thief described a man who "was strikingly similar to (the suspect) at both the Speedway and Bruaw Drive locations," charging documents state.
The car-theft witnesses also said it appeared the thief was eating a sandwich.
Car briefly missing: About 1:50 p.m., a North York man called police to say his Honda Civic had been stolen sometime between 3:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. He said he had no idea how the car could have been stolen because he still had the keys, according to police.
On Aug. 2, the man reported his vehicle had been returned and parked, saying his friend Gregory Fink had taken it without his permission, documents state. He said Fink had been sleeping on his couch for about a week, police said.
Shortly before 9 a.m. Aug. 2, a Northern Regional officer on routine patrol spotted the Ford Flex that had been stolen the day before in Manchester Township, parked three-tenths of a mile from the North Duke Street home where Fink was staying, according to charging documents.
That's when Officer Stephen Lebo went to the North Duke Street home, where the resident agreed to let the officer come inside and search for Fink.
While speaking with the resident, Lebo spotted a blue blanket on the living-room floor, behind a couch.
"It was immediately apparent that someone was hiding under the blanket," Lebo wrote in charging documents.
Fink in a blanket: When Lebo pulled back the blanket he found Fink, who was pretending to be asleep, police allege.
"(Fink) matched the exact description provided to (police) by all victim and witnesses involved in the (crimes) from the day prior," Lebo wrote. "His arms were covered in tattoos down to his hands and his face was covered in scabs."
After arresting Fink, Lebo found three credit cards in the man's pockets, two of which belonged to the man who said his car was rifled through the previous day at the Manchester Township business, documents state.
The third credit card belonged to the man who was letting Fink sleep on his couch, police said.
After he was booked, Fink's boxer shorts were seized because officers suspect they belong to the Manchester Township man whose home Fink allegedly broke into on Aug. 1, according to charging documents.
Past crimes: Fink has a lengthy criminal history in York County that includes convictions for criminal trespass, drug dealing, fleeing or eluding police, flight to avoid apprehension, being a convicted felon in illegal possession of a gun and driving under the influence.
In addition to charges for his alleged Aug. 1 crime spree, Fink has several other pending cases.
Spring Garden Township Police and Northern Regional Police recently filed shoplifting charges against him, and York City Police filed charges that include theft, receiving stolen property and fleeing or eluding police, according to court records.
It is unclear if Fink has retained an attorney.
— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at email@example.com or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.