Vehicle break-in suspect caught, released on bond

GILLETTE, Wyo.— Prosecutors believe a man reportedly on parole for burglary is the culprit behind several recent vehicle break-ins and thefts across Gillette, court documents state.

Rodney Smith, 31, is charged with five counts of burglary for allegedly breaking into and stealing $460 in currency, gift cards, and personal items from multiple vehicles in Gillette, according to an affidavit of probable cause filed in the case.

The charges against Smith follow another burglary charge that he was arrested for in March 2022, where officers reportedly tied Smith to another vehicle break-in using his identifiable DC shoe pattern, which is described multiple times in the affidavit as a “waffle-pattern” shoe print.

A search of his vehicle reportedly yielded a pair of insulated black pants and a black face mask; Smith was wearing a black coat at the time of his arrest, per the affidavit.

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Gillette police contacted Smith again on April 22 at the Probation and Parole Office on Commercial Drive where he was taken into custody for the five counts of burglary after detectives tied him to multiple other incidents using the same “waffle-pattern” shoe prints and surveillance footage, per the affidavit.

Smith was arraigned on the charges before Circuit Court Judge Paul S. Phillips, of the Sixth Judicial District, on April 25 who set bond at $2,500.

As of April 27, Smith has since posted bond and is no longer confined in the Campbell County Detention Center.