Helped by tips from the public, Saugerties police nabbed a burglar, considered armed and dangerous, on the afternoon of Dec. 21 who, police allege, stole oxycodone at gunpoint from an elderly village homeowner two days earlier
Andrew S. Rodriguez, 21, has since been sent to Ulster County Jail on $100,000 bail and has been charged with the felonies of first-degree robbery and first-degree burglary.
According to Saugerties Police Chief Joseph Sinagra, Rodriguez was previously the victim’s home care aide, and knew there were drugs in the house. Rodriguez, police said, allegedly threatened to shoot the homeowner and his current health aide if they didn’t give him the medication, and got physical with the homeowner; police arrived after both the healthcare aide and a neighbor who heard the commotion called 911. Police said Rodriguez left the scene in a waiting vehicle that was parked in front of the home — no one involved saw the make and model of the vehicle, or its license plate number.
Tips from the public brought detectives to 189 North St. in Kingston; Sinagra said the perpetrator had been recently evicted from his previous apartment, which complicated the search. When Rodriguez left the apartment and saw officers outside, he reportedly ducked back into the house and called the Saugerties Police Department for guidance on how to comply safely, because there were small children in the apartment. Sinagra said that he spoke to the fugitive personally, and stayed on the line with him until he was put into handcuffs.
A preliminary hearing is set for Rodriguez in Village Court on Dec. 27.
Sinagra said that, in this case, “the media really [facilitated] a quick resolution.”