AR-15 rifle, 70 cartons of cigarettes stolen

Published 12:14 am Saturday, October 7, 2017

RESERVE — A semi-automatic rifle and 70 cartons of cigarettes were stolen from a Reserve business this week, authorities said.

According to the St. John the Baptist Parish Sheriff’s Office, investigators acted fast in securing two arrests and recovering most of the stolen items.

Morris Brown Jr., 28, and Aaron Duhe, 50, both of Reserve, were arrested Monday, the same day police were notified of the burglary.

Deputies responded to Saints Express on West Airline Highway at approximately 2 a.m. Monday, when they reviewed video surveillance that identified two suspects.

A Sheriff’s Office release said deputies learned Brown and Duhe entered Saints Express by pushing in the front door before stealing an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle, three magazines and a carrying case, 70 cigarette cartons, five refurbished iPhones, approximately 75 pieces of costume jewelry and an undisclosed amount of coins.

Police said judicial warrants were issued for Brown and Duhe, who each admitted to burglarizing the business during questioning.

The rifle, magazines and case were recovered. The coins, 30 cartons of cigarettes, and some pieces of costume jewelry also were recovered.

Police said the recovered items have been returned to the business.

Brown is charged with felony principal to unauthorized entry to a business. Duhe is charged with felony criminal damage to property and felony unauthorized entry to a business.

Brown is being held in lieu of a $25,000 bond. Duhe is being held in custody in lieu of a $32,500 bond.