Three vehicles within a one mile distance were stolen in the early morning hours of Sept. 30, and items were stolen from other vehicles parked in the same east Westerville area during the same timeframe, Westerville police reported.
A resident in the 1100 block of Chatham Ridge Road reported that he woke at 4 a.m. Sept. 30 to the sound of his car being backed out of his driveway. The car, which had a valet key inside, later was found abandoned at nearby Wilder Elementary, 6375 Goldfinch Drive. The man also reported that another car parked in his driveway had been rummaged through.
Another vehicle was reported stolen overnight from a driveway in the 1300 block of Goldsmith Drive. According to police report, the vehicle's owner left her purse in the vehicle with a spare key inside.
A third vehicle was stolen from the 600 block of Winsholen Court between 2:30 a.m. and 7:40 a.m. Sept. 30. That vehicle later was recovered by Columbus police.
During the same timeframe, items were stolen from vehicles parked in the 1100 block of Autumn Creek Circle, the 1300 block of Cherokee Rose Drive, the 700 block of Westray Drive and the 1200 block of Scituate Court.
Residents of a home in the 600 block of Harwick Street reported that two of their vehicles were ransacked, but nothing was stolen.
Police arrested a 26-year-old Columbus man in connection with the crimes.
Sean T. Chitwood of Collingdale Road was charged with receiving stolen property and taken to the Franklin County jail.
Chitwood fled from a vehicle reportedly seen leaving the scene of one of the thefts from a motor vehicle.
The vehicle he fled from had been reported stolen in Blendon Township. Westerville police continue to investigate and said Chitwood likely will face more charges and other suspects are being pursued in the crimes,.
In other recent Westerville Division of Police incident reports:
* A 20-year-old woman, a 21-year-old woman and a 27-year-old man were arrested at 4:30 p.m. Oct. 2 for attempting to steal $316 worth of merchandise from a store in the 100 block of Polaris Parkway.
* A car parked in a driveway in the 1200 block of Chatham Ridge Road was broken into between 10 p.m. Oct. 2 and 7:45 a.m. Oct. 3. A laptop computer, GPS unit, gold clubs and shoes were reported stolen.