Showing posts with label Milwaukee. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Milwaukee. Show all posts

July 26, 2014

Lipinski Stradivarius Theft, Milwaukee: Man sentenced to 3 1/2 years in prison for participating in robbery (providing convicted felon with Taser used in attack)

Milwaukee Police arrested three suspects Feb. 3 for the theft on Jan. 27 of the $5 million dollar Lipinski Stradivarius violin recovered on Feb. 5 in a suitcase in an attic. At the end of May, Universal Allah, pleaded guilty to participating in the robbery. On July 24, Allah, described as a 36-year-old barber in Milwaukee and the father of two daughters, was sentenced to 3 1/2 years in prison. Megan Trimble of Milwaukee's Journal Sentinel reported:
In addition to his prison term, Allah will remain under extended supervision for another 3 1/2 years, must avoid contact with the people involved in the attack and pay $4,014.57 in lost wages and ambulance fees to Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra concertmaster Frank Almond....Allah's attorney and even the prosecutor had recommended only a suspended prison term and probation for three years. The crime's purported mastermind, Salah Salahadyn, 42, had been set to enter a guilty plea Thursday, but it was postponed. Allah, who had no prior criminal record, admitted providing Salahadyn, a felon, with the Taser used in the attack.

February 6, 2014

Lipinski Stradivarius Theft, Milwaukee: Local television station WTMJ-4 breaks the story that Police Found Violin

WTMJ-4, Milwaukee's local television station, reported this morning "Police recover stolen Stradivarius violin":

MILWAUKEE -- Milwaukee police have recovered the rare Stradivarius violin that was stolen from Concertmaster Frank Almond on Jan. 27, multiple sources tell TODAY'S TMJ4's Jermont Terry.
Three suspects were arrested Wednesday in connection with the theft.
Our sources said one of the suspects took detectives to where the instrument was being held at someone's residence on Milwaukee's east side Wednesday night.
The violin is now at Milwaukee police headquarters and is in good condition.
Police will hold a news conference at noon on Thursday to announce further details.
Check back to TODAY'S TMJ4 to watch the conference live at noon. 

Here's a link to the YouTube video posted by TMJ4 with Jonah Kaplan reporting on the recovery of the violin from police headquarters.

Photo released by Milwaukee Police Department of Chief Edward Flynn’s announcement following the arrests of the three suspects.  Live coverage of today's police press conference at 12:00 Noon CST is available on TMJ4's Milwaukee streaming site here.

The valuable and rare Stradivarius was stolen from Frank Almond on January 27, 2014. The suspect used a stun gun to disable Almond, who subsequently dropped the instrument. The thief then  escaped in a maroon minivan driven by an apparent accomplice.

According to the website Stradivari designed and crafted more than 1,000 violins and instruments during his lifetime, only 650 of which are still in existence today.

Lipinski Stradivarius Theft, Milwaukee: WTMJ-TV and Journal Sentinel report Milwaukee Police Have Found Violin

Ashley Luthern of Milwaukee's Journal Sentinel in "Stolen Stradivarius violin recovered, sources say":
The 300-year-old Stradivarius violin that was taken in an armed robbery last month has been found, law enforcement sources told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
The Milwaukee Police Department is scheduled to hold a news conference on the investigation at noon Thursday but had not publicly confirmed that the violin was recovered.
WTMJ-TV reported Thursday morning that the violin was recovered overnight on Milwaukee's east side and is said to be in good condition.
During a Wednesday news conference, Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn said there was a "good chance" the violin was still in Milwaukee.
Milwaukee police have arrested three suspects in connection with the theft and have referred the case to the Milwaukee County district attorney's office. Charges are expected to be filed Friday, according to the district attorney's office.
The three suspects — two men, ages 42 and 36, and a woman, 32 — were arrested Monday morning at their respective Milwaukee residences and remained in police custody Wednesday. One of the suspects has been linked to a prior art theft.

Lipinski Stradivarius theft, Milwaukee: Three Suspects Arrested, Violin Not Found

Milwaukee Police twitter: "Chief Edward
Flynn announces arrests of 3 suspects in
Stradivarius violin robbery."
Local television station TMJ4 covered the "breaking news" and posted an 11-minute video which included the press conference held Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. led by Milwaukee's Mayor Tom Barrett, Police Chief Edward Flynn, and Acting Special Agent in Charge G.B. Jones. Mayor Barrett praised the cooperation between the Milwaukee Police Department and the FBI during the "ongoing investigation" into the theft of the violin. This is what Chief Flynn said:
At this event I wanted to notify everyone that the Milwaukee Police Department will be seeking charges against three individuals for the January 27th theft and robbery from the concertmaster of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra of his priceless Stradivarius violin. The suspects are a 36-year-old man, a 41-year-old man, and a 32-year-old woman -- all from the city of Milwaukee. They were arrested February 3 and all three remain in our custody. Now the Milwaukee Police Department will continue to work closely with our colleagues in the Federal Bureau of Investigation as well as the District Attorney's Office. We emphasize that at this time, that although we have made arrests, we have not yet recovered the violin... This case came together rapidly in the city of Milwaukee and the leads were followed up with by our detectives who had invaluable help from the FBI, from their art unit as obviously they have a broad perspective. As we continue to search for this violin, I suspect that their assistance will continue to be invaluable. The important thing to stress is that within a week of this case our detectives made an arrest which we believe will result in these individuals being succesfully charged and convicted. Now, as I said, we do not have the violin. As is known, there is a substantial reward out for that violin and we urge the community to do what it can to develop information that can help us identify and locate and recover this priceless instrument.
Chief Flynn then gave phone numbers for lines to the police department and the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra and said that they have had 'valuable tips on these lines' and then opened up to the media for questions.

Is the violin in Milwaukee? Quick answer: "it's a reasonable supposition that it is still in our jurisdiction". The chief answered that the arrests were based on both information and physical evidence linked one of the suspects to this crime. Flynn answered another question that "at this time there is no indication that these three suspects were working for anyone but themselves". Chief Flynn would not speculate on motive, provide any information about results of a line-up, or the exact charges to be filed.

As for finding the violin, Chief Flynn said they would continue questioning the suspects and would be trying to illicit their cooperation -- he described them right now as "engaged in the process". The reward may have provided an "inducement" to some of the tips received. "We did get some calls and some of them were helpful," Flynn answered one journalist. And thanked another reporter for asking about the van which they are still seeking and asked the media to post the image of the van previously released. "The more information we can get, the quicker we can recover the van, and restore it to its owners," Flynn said. In answer to another question, he said that the case to the violin had been recovered within hours of the theft. The FBI representative Gibson said that they are pursuing leads outside of Wisconsin.

Here's a link to the news as posted by the Milwaukee Police Department "Suspects Arrested in Violin Robbery, Still Seeking Violin."