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Police: Man wanted in car break-in case now in custody

By Len Righi, WFMZ.com Reporter
Published On: Oct 01 2012 06:21:39 PM CDT
PLAINFIELD TWP., Pa. -

A man wanted on more than 400 charges involving theft from unlocked cars in Nazareth neighborhoods is in custody after he was caught lying to police, officials said.

Ian S. Shoemaker was arrested after he gave police a false name and birth date during a traffic stop at George and E streets in Plainfield Twp., Northampton Co., at about 4:20 p.m. Saturday, officials said. Shoemaker was a passenger in the car, they added.

Shoemaker, 29, told police he had no ID because he lost his license in a park the day before and that he was returning to his home in Nebraska by bus the next day, officials said.

Officers discovered Shoemaker's identity and a warrant for his arrest from the Nazareth Police Department after he was taken to state police barracks and fingerprinted, officials said.

Shoemaker is facing charges for being part of a ring that stole more than $20,000 in merchandise over several months with 46-year-old Christine Petchonka, of Nazareth,  and two 16-year-old juveniles, one of whom was her son, officials said.

Petchonka was charged in early September.

Shoemaker, of 27 North Main St., Nazareth, was arraigned on 410 charges, including theft by unlawful taking, receiving stolen property and criminal conspiracy, and committed to the Northampton County Prison on $40,000 bail, according to court documents.

Shoemaker was also arraigned on a charge of giving false identification to law enforcement authorities, court papers show, and his bail for that offense was set at $5,000.

A preliminary hearing on the theft charges is set for 10 a.m. Oct. 9, and a preliminary hearing on the giving false identification charge is set for 1 p.m. Oct. 9.