Crime

Charleston homeowner's camera catches photo of shirtless, knife-wielding suspect breaking in

CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) - UPDATE

Allman turned himself in to police just after 6 p.m. Tuesday.  He is charged with breaking and entering.

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ORIGINAL

A homeowner's camera catches a disturbing photo and now, officers with the Charleston Police Department are searching for the man at the center of it.

Imagine an image being sent to your cell phone while you're away from home- A large man making his way through your house, holding a large knife.  That's what one family in our region is going through.

The home sits along Sissonville Drive.  A family purchased it recently and they're renovating it with hopes of selling it.  The neighborhood has seen its fair share of crime, so that family, who has asked to remain anonymous, hung a trail camera inside, just in case. 

Turns out, that purchase paid off.

As the man broke in Monday, March 26, the camera snapped a photo of him.  As a result, officers were able to identified the shirtless, knife-wielding suspect Tuesday. 

His name, they said, is John Allman.  He owns a home directly across the street from the home that police said he broke into.

Within minutes of our crew arriving on the scene, inspectors with the City of Charleston Building Commission arrived and condemned Allman's home. 

His things were definitely there.  He, however, was not.

It was condemned because the home has no running water, no electricity.   Trash, tires, and feces were everywhere. 

Minutes after those inspectors left, officers arrived to investigate. 

Allman's side door was wide open, so they made their way inside.  Several minutes later they walked back out, holding this knife- a knife that looks identical to the one Allman is holding in the photo.

All of the aspects of this case that led up the Allman being identified were made possible thanks to that camera that was mounted inside. 

CPD said to always trust your intuition.  "If you see something that doesn't seem right, that's your gut," said Lt. Autumn Davis.  "Call and report it.  It may be something, or it may be nothing.  Unless we know about it, there's nothing we can do about it."

For now, a warrant has been signed for Allman's arrest.  Davis had a message for him.  "You're going to be charged with breaking and entering.  Turn yourself in"

Officers said Allman stole the camera that took the photo of him.

This story is developing.  Stay with us for updates.


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