'Pocket dialed' 911 call leads to easy arrest of two thieves

2011-12-14T21:26:00Z 'Pocket dialed' 911 call leads to easy arrest of two thievesSANDY CULLEN | scullen@madison.com | 608-252-6137 madison.com
December 14, 2011 9:26 pm  • 

Two Madison men were cited for retail theft Tuesday after a “pocket dial” to 911 provided a live play-by-play of their plans to sell stolen DVDs and computer games at a used video game store on the city’s East Side, police said.

According to Madison police, Jason S. Hamielec, 29, and Brian A. Johnson, 28, couldn’t stop talking about their thievery after lifting a bunch of DVDs and computer games from a Target store at 201 Junction Road on the city’s Far West Side at about 5:30 p.m.

They yakked, jawed and chortled inside their getaway SUV for 54 minutes, bragging about what they stole, describing the vehicle they were in, and chatting about where they might get the best prices for the stolen merchandise before locking in on the Video X-Change, 3002 Atwood Ave., said police spokesman Joel DeSpain.

The two even talked about how police would be looking for a blue Dodge Durango without license plates, so they decided put the plates back on, DeSpain said.

When then the pair pulled into a parking lot near the Video X-Change, they noticed a couple of squad cars, DeSpain said. The next thing they knew, several officers, a couple with guns drawn, were yelling, “Police! Show your hands!”

Both men were dumbfounded by how police knew exactly where they would be, not knowing one of them had pocket dialed 911 on his cellphone when they got into the SUV after the theft, DeSpain said.

As officers inventoried the stolen items and the men’s property, DeSpain said, one of them looked at the smoking gun — the cellphone that was still on with a 911 call taker listening in.

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