Man Burglarized Neighbors When They Went Out Of Town

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

(Memphis) A couple who went out of a town for a fun-filled weekend vacation came back to find out someone broke into their home.

Surprisingly, they found out the suspect was a neighbor.

At the apartment complex in North Memphis, police say the thief lived in apartment number 4 and his friend and neighbor lived in apartment number 2.

“Sure enough, everything, everything was gone,” said Shelby Thompson, who lived with her boyfriend in apartment number 2.

Thompson says she and her boyfriend went on a weekend vacation in June, when Laurence Stella helped himself to their stuff.

“It’s just the worst feeling in the world,” said Thompson.

“He was coming right here and he had a TV,” said neighbor Herman Williams.

Williams,who also lives in the complex on Highway 51, says he saw Stella and an accomplice hauling out the 47-inch flat screen TV.

Thompson says they also stole radios, amps, a computer and laptops.

“Mainly the pictures on the computers is what really got to me,” said Thompson.

Police say when Stella stole the television, radio and amp, he sold them to other mutual friends and those mutual friends ended up ratting him out and giving back the property to the victims.

“How stupid was that?” asked reporter Sabrina Hall.

“I couldn't believe it. I really couldn't believe it,” said Thompson.

Unfortunately, she says the computer and pictures are still out there somewhere.

But not Stella. He’s been arrested and charged with aggravated burglary.

“It feels a lot better that they got him,” said Thompson. “It seems like it has taken a little while, but it does feel a lot better that they finally got him in custody.”

Thompson says that weekend changed the way she looks at neighbors and friends.

“Don't trust anybody,” said Thompson.

Stella is being held on a $30,000 bond.