Police arrest two people in connection with hotel burglaries

By: Katie Roach Email
By: Katie Roach Email

Two people are charged in Perry County in connection with a recent theft at a local hotel. Police say they stole more than $40,000 of surveillance equipment from a vehicle outside the Hampton Inn.

Hazard Police say 40-year-old James Messer and 41-year-old Janet Jent are believed to be involved in several hotel robberies around the area.

They were caught after police used surveillance video to connect them to the robbery at the Hazard Hampton Inn.

The Hampton Inn in Hazard is usually a busy, yet uneventful place.

"Its normally very quiet, and this actually came as a surprise to us. And thankfully its not something we have to deal with often," said Hampton Inn Manager Tami Patton.

But, on August 9th that changed.

"For the most part they seem to be targeting hotels, construction workers, contractors, people like that," said Detective Sergeant Paul Campbell with the Hazard Police Department.

Hazard City Police say two people stole $43,000 worth of surveillance equipment from a van outside the Hampton Inn

Managers at the Hampton Inn say incidents like this are rare and they have measures in place to ensure the safety of their guests.

"We do have surveillance video equipment that does cover all the ends of the building, and we do have that in place to protect the possessions of the guests that we do have staying with us on a regular basis," said Patton.

But, police believe this is not the first hotel burglary by Messer and Jent.

"The same MO's were used during the occurences of these crimes. We actually received a confession of another related incident at the Super 8 Motel," said Campbell.

Police say in all, the two have stolen hundred of thousands of dollars worth of property. They believe the two were planning to trade it for drugs.

Jent and Messer are being held in the Kentucky River Regional Jail.

Their case will go before a grand jury September 9th.

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