Distinct sneakers help Holly Springs police nab suspect

Wake County News

HOLLY SPRINGS, N.C. (WNCN) – A shoe is a key clue in an investigation of a series of burglaries.

Officers seized a pair of limited edition high-top sneakers from 25-year-old Michael Ray Roan. Holly Springs Police arrested Roan on charges of burglary and attempted burglary, and he is a suspect in an additional breaking and entering cases.

Investigators in the Wake County town are familiar with Roan, having arrested him for breaking and entering a half dozen times. The first three of those cases came in a two-month span, soon after his 16th birthday. He received a suspended sentence in those investigations, but two years later, he was in state prison for eluding officers. Two years after that, Roan received a prison sentence for several felonies including breaking and entering.

The most recent arrest warrants are tied to break-ins in the early morning hours of December 24, 2018. Police said Roan used a heavy object against a door at a home on Cobblepoint Way. The door did not budge, and warrants said the homeowner was inside at the time of the attempted burglary.

Less than two hours later, a homeowner at a house a few doors down from the first incident reported a burglar entered his home through an unlocked door. Investigators identified the suspect as Roan. Officers arrested him Feb. 28 for the Christmas Eve break-in.

Roan is currently under investigation for a similar break-in and attempted break-in from Feb. 27, just a few hours before his arrest on the charges from December.

Search warrants said Roan tried to break down a door on Havelock Court with a cinder block. Court records said he checked neighboring homes and found an unlocked back door, but came face-to-face with the homeowner there and ran away.

Officers found fingerprints and a shoe print, and obtained a search warrant to seize Roan’s phones and a pair of shoes.

Warrants list the sneakers as limited edition shoes from a line made for basketball Hall of Famer Patrick Ewing, who was an NBA All-Star with the New York Knicks. Ewing is now the head coach at Georgetown University, his alma mater, but previously served as an assistant coach for the Charlotte Hornets. The sneakers seized from Roan are the color of the Hornets: purple, teal, and white.

Holly Springs public information officer Mark Andrews said this case serves as a reminder of the importance of locking doors.

“Anything you can do to slow a thief getting inside your home increases your chances of not being a victim,” Andrews said.

“Even if you’re expecting company. You can go unlock the door (for them). Not because there’s a likelihood of something happening, but it’s just a good idea to be in the habit of locking your doors, cars, and homes.”

Andrews said it is unusual that the Christmas Eve incidents happened in the middle of the night with people home. He said these crimes are more common during the day when people are away.

“Typically thieves will not enter your home if they think you’re there, but sometimes they can be mistaken,” he said.

Holly Springs police encourage anyone with information about these or similar crimes to contact investigators.

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