Charges Filed In Mid-Day Burglary Spree In Ocean City

OCEAN CITY — A local woman faces 24 total charges, including multiple counts of first-degree burglary, for an alleged break-in spree in the middle of the afternoon last Sunday.

Around 4 p.m. last Sunday, an Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) officer responded to a residence on Sunset Drive for a reported breaking and entering that had already occurred. The officer arrived at the address and observed two units with broken windows and glass on the ground directly next to the front doors. In addition, one unit had an open window with the screen cut.

The officer met with a victim who lived in one of the units who told police he left his residence around 9:40 a.m., returned hours later and discovered the window was broken and someone had entered the unit and stolen various items, according to police reports.

The victim told police his laptop and external computer hard drive were stolen. In addition, another laptop computer, a cell phone, earphones and a winter jacket had been stolen. The owner of the property on Sunset Drive arrived and told police three of the units in the building were unoccupied. A check of those units revealed nothing appeared to be missing, although one had a window broken near the front door along with a cut screen, according to police reports.

All in all, the investigation revealed three units in one building and one unit in another adjacent building on Sunset Drive had been broken into with various items reported stolen. Additional OCPD officers arrived on the scene and began to canvas the neighborhood for evidence and possible suspects. A witness who lived in a nearby building told police he had observed a female suspect break into one of the units with a hammer earlier in the day and that he had recorded the incident on his cell phone.

The officer viewed the video footage and observed Rachel Cloud, 26, of Berlin, approach one of the units with a hammer. According to police reports, Cloud looked around several times to see if anyone was watching. She then swung the hammer at the window and broke the glass. Once the glass was broken, Cloud crawled through the window and entered unit three.

Another OCPD officer was in the area conducting follow-up investigations when he reportedly saw a woman matching Cloud’s description inside a unit nearby. The officer knocked on the door and made contact with a female resident, who told police no one else was inside. However, the officer could see a suspect matching Cloud’s description through a window standing behind the front door.

According to police, the occupant of the unit came out the front door with Cloud following behind. At that point, Cloud was taken into custody and charged with burglary, theft, malicious destruction of property and other related charges.

The investigation determined four units had been broken into on the street. The manner of entry through a broken window near the front door was consistent in each of the break-ins. In addition, a witness had allegedly recorded Cloud breaking a window with a hammer to gain entry to one of the burglarized units.

The officer suspected the items reported stolen were in the unit where Cloud was located and obtained a search warrant for the premises. The subsequent search recovered the stolen items as well as the hammer found during the search. Cloud was charged with 24 total counts including multiple counts of first-degree burglary, theft and malicious destruction of property.