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Thieves target downtown businesses | PagelandProgressive.com

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NEWS UPDATE
Pageland Police have arrested Matthew James Oglesby for breaking into a downtown Pageland store.
Oglesby has been charged with two counts of burglary in the second degree, two counts of possessing stolen goods, two counts of violating the curfew and single counts of unlawful entry and larceny.
According to S.C. Court records Oglesby was charged, but not prosecuted, for burglary in 2017.
Pageland police continue to investigate other downtown break-ins. 

ORIGINAL STORY FOLLOWS
Pageland police are investigating a rash of downtown break-ins and the Chesterfield County Sheriff’s Office has responded by increasing the number of deputies patrolling in the western portion of the county.
According to Pageland police and downtown property owners, there have been break-ins at Lynn’s Café, Jordan’s Jewelry, The Rent-A-Center, the Cowboy Corner, the Pageland Fitness Center, the former T&L grocery store, and Pageland Farm Equipment’s downtown storage facility behind the Ball Theatre.
Most of the businesses have been closed as a result of Gov. Henry McMaster’s executive order designed to curb the transmission of the deadly COVID-19 outbreak. 
Pageland police have posted photos of the April 15 break-in at the Rent-A-Center on North Pearl Street.
Armed suspects stole several items from the business around 2 a.m., according to police. 
About 40 minutes later, suspects broke into the Cowboy Corner and stole several items, police said.
Chesterfield County Sheriff James Dixon said Monday he is assigning an additional officer to patrol the western portion of the county. Currently there are two deputies assigned to the western part of the county at any one time. Those deputies have been available to help the Pageland Police during the COVID-19 issues resulting from Chief Craig Greenlee’s diagnosis with the virus. Greenlee is still recovering from the virus.
Dixon said he could assign an additional deputy if needed.
“We need to make sure we do our part,” Dixon said.
Mayor Jason Evans said Sunday he has recently observed the downtown, the Petersburg community and the commercial corridor on the bypass between the hours of midnight and 2 a.m.
“Our downtown alleyways are not well lit, and our businesses need more lighting,” Evans said.
Evans said he has also talked with Pageland police about having more officers available later in the evening. 
Evans said the town council may reconsider installing its own security cameras downtown. He said the town council has discussed the item during its last two budget cycles. “We need to move their priority up,” he said.
Rodney Nicholson, owner of the Ball Theatre, recently posted on Facebook a request for downtown merchants and property owners to be more vigilant. 
“I want to encourage all downtown businesses that have security alarm systems and surveillance cameras to make sure they are functioning. If you don’t have anything and can install one or two cameras, then now is the time,” Nicholson wrote.
“If you are closed check your building daily.
“As citizens going through town on errands or for work you can help too by looking around when you pass through town and report anything that looks out of the normal or suspicious!
“I am afraid this will continue to get worse until we cam all get back to work and open up!”
Timothy Griffin, president of the Pageland Chamber of Commerce, is also encouraging everyone to be aware.
“If you see something, say something,” Griffin said.
Anyone with information on the break-ins is asked to call the Pageland Police at 843-672-6437.

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