Police say: Feura Bush man steals lawn mower from neighbor, drives it home

NEW SCOTLAND — Three police agencies — state, county, and the city of Albany — worked on a case leading to the arrest of a resident of Lower Flatrock Road, who, they say, drove away a lawn mower that belonged to his former landlord and tried to sell it on Craigslist.

Eric Galea, 32, of 165 Lower Flatrock Road, was charged with third-degree grand larceny and third-degree burglary, both felonies.

Galea’s lawyer, public defendant Michael Jurena, told The Enterprise last week that he is working on a deal for Galea.

“There is still information coming in,” he said, “We’re going to look at the case from all different angles.”

According to the arrest report from the Albany County Sheriff’s Office, events occurred as follows: The landlord reported the theft on June 1 and said his lawn mower could have been stolen anywhere between May 25 and the day he reported it missing.

State Police arrived at the scene and told the sheriff’s deputy Jordan Harrington that Galea was identified as a suspect.

On May 29, an Albany Police Officer had seen an ad on Craigslist for a Ferris lawn mower that was later found to match the description of the lawn mower stolen from Lower Flatrock Road. The officer who saw the ad called the phone number listed, and spoke with someone named “Eric,” who said the lawn mower could be seen at 165 Lower Flatrock Road — Galea’s address.

On June 2 and 3, deputies interviewed two of Galea’s neighbors about the alleged larceny. One neighbor said he saw Galea and another man at Galea’s residence on May 29 with a large red Ferris zero-turn lawn mower, and that they kept starting and turning off the mower until it would no longer start.

The same neighbor also said he saw Galea and the other man load the mower onto a trailer and that the male drove away with the trailer attached to a truck. Galea left a few minutes later in a van, he said.

Another neighbor said he saw Galea walking down the road from his house, and then a short while later saw him riding a red Ferris zero-turn lawn mower back to his house, where he repeatedly turned the lawn mower on and off.

On June 4, Galea was found at his home and taken to the public safety building in Clarksville, where he was interviewed and admitted to stealing the lawn mower.


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