The Nassau County Police Department’s newly created Burglary Pattern Team has arrested a South Farmingdale man who they believe is responsible for as many as 16 commercial burglaries, police said Thursday.
The suspect, Francisco Leboy, 55, has been charged with three burglaries and an attempted break-in at Nassau nail salons and charges could be filed for another dozen burglaries, police said.
“We do believe that he’s responsible for all 16,” said acting Nassau Police Commissioner Thomas Krumpter. “I believe he has a heroin issue. We believe drugs might be the motivating factor.”
Chief of Detectives Kevin Smith, at a news briefing Thursday morning, said the burglaries were not easily detected because the thief had removed the lock cylinder from the front door, rather than breaking a window.
The pattern of 16 that investigators are working to link to Leboy began in June, and other businesses burglarized include seven nail salons, eight restaurants and one laundry stretching from Hempstead Village to the Nassau-Suffolk line, including eight in Farmingdale, two in Bellmore, and one each in Massapequa and Bethpage, police said.
The burglaries took place at night between the hours of 8 p.m. and 3 a.m.
The Burglary Pattern Team was created on Jan. 11 in response to an uptick in residential burglaries. Nassau police have seen a 28 percent uptick in residential burglaries from Jan. 1 through March 9 this year over the same time period last year, according to department statistics.
Commercial burglaries are down 19 percent through today year over year, according to department statistics provided by Smith.
“This is the very reason we started the burglary pattern team task force . . . to address these pattern burglaries in a very concentrated effort,” Krumpter said.
The pattern team worked in concert with the department’s Bureau of Special Operations and the Intelligence Unit to crack the case, which involved hours of surveillance and video analysis, Smith said.
Leboy, of Main Street, was arrested Wednesday near the intersection of Main Street and Fallwood Parkway in South Farmingdale at 9:10 p.m., Nassau County police said.
He was charged with three counts of third-degree burglary and one count of third-degree attempted burglary. He was held on $185,000 bail at arraignment on Thursday in First District Court in Hempstead.
Leboy is a transient who has been in the area for the last couple of years and is on disability due to an accident “that has him walking with a limp,” Smith said.
Leboy has done jail time for burglaries in the past and has also been arrested for drug possession, Smith said.
In the nail salon burglaries that Leboy has been charged with, police said the suspect entered Dee Dee’s Nail Salon on Main Street in South Farmingdale about 2:30 a.m. Sept. 18, taking an undisclosed amount of cash.
On Nov. 5, police said he entered the Rainbow Nail Salon on Main Street in Farmingdale, also at 2:30 a.m. — and also taking cash. In the third burglary, Leboy entered the Lucky Nail Salon on Main Street, Hempstead, about 8:40 p.m. Jan. 11, taking cash, they said.
In all three cases police said Leboy entered the stores after the lock cylinder had been removed from the front door.
In the fourth incident, which occurred March 12, police said the front-door lock cylinder was “tampered with” at the Rainbow Nail Salon on Main Street — but said Leboy was unable to enter the store. He fled without any proceeds.