Providence Point: Guard exploited 'sophisticated' security in Scott thefts
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A nighttime security guard at the sprawling Providence Point retirement community exploited an elaborate security system when he used a stolen master key to break into residents' apartments, taking as much as $150,000 worth of jewelry and other valuables, a spokeswoman for the retirement community said today.
Steven P. Kowalski, 49, was charged Friday with two counts of burglary and faces others, Scott police said Monday. He had worked as a guard there for nearly two years, spokeswoman Marilyn Walsh wrote in an email sent this morning.
"There is a sophisticated security system in place so that very limited access to apartments is possible in case of emergency," she wrote. "As a security guard, unfortunately, Mr. Kowalski had access to the system for emergencies. Given the evidence the police have been able to obtain, Kowalski obviously abused the privilege that had been entrusted to him."
Residents reported at least 13 break-ins between October and December last year, Scott police Sgt. Jeff Skees said Monday. Police had long suspected the culprit was an employee of Providence Point but could not narrow down the possibilities.
"The rash of thefts that took place late last year has subsided with the arrest of a former employee," Al Allison Jr., president and chief executive officer of Baptist Homes Society, said in a statement. "However, at that time, there were doubts that the person arrested was responsible for all the incidents of theft that had been reported at that time. ... We want to thank our residents for their proactive response and the Scott Township police department for their diligence in solving this case."
First Published June 5, 2012 12:18 pm