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Burglary probe covers a five-county area
Municipal buildings have been targeted
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Vernon County Crime Stoppers’ latest request for public assistance is part of an investigation into a series of burglaries spanning a five-county area.

The Vernon County Sheriff’s Office in Viroqua is investigating burglaries in the villages of Coon Valley, Ontario, La Farge, Readstown and Viola, which occurred between Dec. 2 and Dec. 9.

The burglars have targeted municipal buildings, including village halls, community buildings and libraries.

According to the Vernon County Broadcaster of Viroqua, each burglary has netted $600 or less.

Deputy Lt. Jason Crume told the Broadcaster that the Sheriff’s Office is conducting  a larger investigation with authorities in Crawford, Juneau, Monroe, and Richland counties, where similar thefts have been reported. In the five-county area, 19 burglaries have been reported.

“They employ similar methods of entry and they are taking only the cash from the buildings,” Crume said. “They definitely had a plan to do it, in my opinion. All of the places they’ve hit–nobody has security camera systems.”

Crume said the cash is untraceable and the burglars have avoided taking property that can be traced.

He said the evidence leads investigators to believe two or more people are involved in the burglaries.

Buildings that have been burglarized in Vernon County include:

• Coon Valley: The village library;

• La Farge: The village hall and the village library;

• Ontario: The community hall and the village hall;

• Readstown: The village hall, the town of Kickapoo hall and the village library;

• Viola: The village library.

Tipsters may be eligible for cash rewards of up to $1,000 and will remain anonymous. To submit a tip call 608-637-8477 or 800-657-6868; tips can also be sent via text message by texting 274637 (CRIMES) - (type VERN + tip).

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