Sandy Baker, 42, of the 4400 block of Spaulding Ave in Chicago
Sandy Baker, 42, of the 4400 block of Spaulding Ave in Chicago

A Chicago man has been charged with multiple felonies in connection with two ruse burglaries in Lake County.

Lake County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Sgt. Christopher Covelli said that an arrest warrant was issued and on Thursday the Lake County Sheriff’s Office Warrants Team along with the U.S. Marshals Service, North Regional Major Crimes Task Force (NORTAF), Illinois State Police (ISP) Ruse Burglary Task Force, and Lake County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigations Division apprehended Sandy Baker, 42, of the 4400 block of Spaulding Ave in Chicago.

Baker had a felony arrest warrant for one count of residential burglary (Class 1 felony) and one count of theft (Class 3 felony).

The warrant was for a ruse burglary which occurred on June 27 in unincorporated Deerfield, officials said.

The Lake County Sheriff’s Office Warrants Team said they obtained information that Baker was staying at a family residence in Chicago which is where he was taken into custody.

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Following his arrest, Lake County Sheriff’s detectives determined Baker was also responsible for a ruse burglary which occurred on June 20 in Long Grove.

In addition to the arrest warrant, Baker was charged with an additional count residential burglary (Class 1 felony) and an additional count of theft (Class 3 felony) for his involvement in the Long Grove ruse burglary.

Lake County Sheriff’s Office said that a ruse burglary is a burglary where the offenders use distraction techniques to lure homeowners outside of their residence. After the homeowner is outside and distracted, other individuals enter the home, typically targeting cash, jewelry, or other items of value.

The burglars will use many excuses to lure homeowners outside, including claims of being subcontracted by local government, ploys of a broken pipe, schemes for landscaping/tree trimming services, fence-line questions, and so forth.

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Sheriff’s officials said that there are also instances when offenders will remain inside, distracting the homeowner from within the residence. Other individuals enter the home, unbeknownst to the homeowner. Senior citizens are frequently the intended target of these crimes.

Baker remains held in the Lake County Jail on a $200,000 bond. He is next due in court on August 24 at 9:00 a.m. in courtroom C-120.

“Please remind your loved ones and neighbors of this type of crime. Ruse burglars appear polite and are usually well dressed, which is part of their ruse. If you didn’t make a service appointment or invite someone to your home, never let an unknown, uninvited person inside, and don’t exit your house to speak to the person,” Sheriff Mark Curran said.