An alert neighbor is being credited with helping to catch a burglar who broke into a Patchogue home Friday morning, police said.
Police say Anthony Mendolia, of Lindenhurst, broke into a home on Central Avenue through a rear door and stole assorted jewelry shortly before noon, police said.
A neighbor saw Mendolia, 27, leaving the rear of the elderly homeowner's residence with a backpack and followed the alleged burglar, who ran away, police said.
The neighbor called 911 and provided a description to responding 5th Precinct officers, police said.
Officer Marc Sforza observed the subject a short distance away. When Mendolia saw the officer, he fled on foot through several yards, police said.
Assisting officers Jeremy Fanning, Edward Ryby and Charles Teufel were able to locate and subdue Mendolia a short distance away, at approximately 12:03 p.m., police said.
Mendolia was found in possession of several thousand dollars worth of jewelry which was taken from the residence. The homeowner identified the items, many of which were irreplaceable family heirlooms, police said.
Mendolia was also in possession of rubber gloves, a pry bar and a hypodermic needle.
Mendolia is charged with burglary, criminal possession of stolen property, possession of burglar’s tools and criminal possession of a hypodermic instrument. He is also wanted for a violation of a parole warrant.
Mendolia is being held overnight at the 5th Precinct, and is scheduled to be arraigned at First District Court in Central Islip on Saturday.