ELYRIA — Police found five license plates from trailers stolen in the area in a burn barrel at an Olmsted Township property, according to a search warrant unsealed Friday in Lorain County Common Pleas Court.
The warrant was for a computer owned by the residents of the house, who haven’t been charged in connection with the investigation.
The warrant, prepared by North Ridgeville police, said that one of the homeowners insisted that he had no idea the trailers people were bringing him were stolen. He told investigators he would paint the trailers to make them look better and then sell them to friends or online through Craigslist.
But police noted in the warrant that six trailers found on the property were believed to be stolen because their serial number stickers were scratched off or removed.
Brand names on the trailers also had been covered and removed, the warrant said. One of the trailers had been stolen from North Ridgeville on June 12.
Police were led to the Cook Road home after an Olmsted Township police officer stopped a Dodge Durango pulling what was determined to have been a trailer stolen from North Olmsted.
The Durango’s driver, William Hausman, told authorities that he was stealing trailers from North Ridgeville and giving them to the property owner in exchange for cash, the warrant said.
Hausman is facing charges including theft, receiving stolen property and driving under suspension, according to Berea Municipal Court records. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges.
North Ridgeville police Capt. Marti Garrow said although Olmsted Township police are taking the lead on the joint investigation, his department is handling the computer because of officers’ expertise in searching electronic devices for information.
Hausman told police that the property owner’s wife would post photos of the stolen trailers to Craigslist because her husband “was not technologically adept,” the warrant said.
Contact Brad Dicken at 329-7147 or email@example.com.