by Julie Ann Madden
Missing cash and jewelry?
Four residences in Union County were burglarized during the day time the last week in September with the thief absconding with more than $10,000 cash and jewelry, of which the amount has still not been determined.
According to Union County Chief Deputy/Investigator Mike Bucholz, three were rural Spink and Akron residences and one was in the town of Elk Point.
An arrest warrant has been issued for Tina Smyer, 42, of Elk Point, S.D., who is the burglary suspect, said Bucholz, noting she allegedly committed the burglaries in a white car. Authorities have confiscated the car and it’s being held as evidence.
Smyer fled Elk Point in a 1999 dark green Volkswagon Jetta with 3-county (Brown County, S.D.), license plates. She has a lengthy criminal history and is out of jail on a Yankton County, S.D., bond for similar offenses.
According to Bucholz, Smyer would stop at a residence and knock at the door. If someone answered, she would pretend to be lost or looking for a friend. One scenario was she’d been drinking with a specific person and that person had left something in her car so she was trying to return it to them.
“Generally, (people who answered their doors) helped her the best they could,” he said, adding if no one answered the door, she entered the residence and searched until she found cash and jewelry.
Bucholz noted “Everyone is innocent until proven guilty.”
Anyone with information on Smyer’s whereabouts or these incidents is asked to call the Union County Sheriff’s Office at 605-356-2679.