WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — Police said a Springtown man rented storage units at Wichita Falls self-storage businesses so that he could pick the locks and steal from other units.
But police said they caught Justin Peoples in the act and have charged him with five counts of burglary.
The first thefts were reported by a tenant of a storage center on Seymour Highway on February 4.
He said the lock was cut and all his welding equipment was taken.
Police said locks on 15 other units had been cut.
On March 1, police were called to another storage center owned by the same company on Southwest Parkway.
The manager told the officer Peoples was at someone else’s unit with his car and the trunk open.
When confronted by police, they said he told them he was getting some tools from his uncle’s storage unit.
When asked for a key, he said his uncle was out of town and he didn’t have the key so he was picking the lock, which he said he learned how to do by watching Youtube.
Police said Peoples had two lock picks and a ground-down allen wrench in his pocket.
The renter of the storage unit then showed up and said people’s had no business there.
A search of people’s car turned up bank cards and other items stolen from units on Seymour Highway.
Another victim reported on February 24 his unit on Southwest Parkway was opened on February 24 and two bicycles worth $4,800 were taken.
Police said Peoples sold one to a pawn shop the same day.
They said video surveillance showed Peoples inside the facility going from unit to unit and picking locks.
It also shows him carrying items such as TVs and a signed Kobe Bryant plaque.
Other TVs including a 65″ model, hand tools, and other items were reported stolen.
Police said they looked at video of Peoples using his code to get in the facilities, then picking locks and taking items.