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Berrien Springs crime spree comes to an end

December 28, 2011|By Denise Bohn, WSBT-TV Reporter

Police say a crime spree in southwest Michigan – more than a month long – has come to an end with the arrest of two brothers.

Johnathan Stefanovic, 24, and his 19-year old brother David Stefanovic were arrested Tuesday night. Johnathan is a graduate student at Andrews University. David has a previous record for assault in the state of Washington.

The village of Berrien Springs is known as a fairly quiet, peaceful place...home of the world renowned Seventh Day Adventist Andrews University. But lately police there have had their hands full with a rash of break-ins and other crimes. 

"For a small community we have been very, very busy for the past several months, says Police Chief Milt Agay at a news conference Wednesday.

The crime spree started on November 22, when a car was stolen from Premiere Tool and Die Shop. Police recovered it in a corn field behind Maple Wood Apartments on the Andrews Campus. It was covered with mud and out of gas.

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Days later there was a break-in at Family Dollar. Days after that, an attempted break-in at Andrew's Bookstore and another break-in at the Family Dollar. Two days later a break-in at the Cass Street Shoppe. And on December 21, an attempted robbery of a trophy case on Andrews Campus.

Besides the break-ins, the Stefanovic brothers are accused of more serious, scary crimes. Police say the pair attempted to stab a pizza delivery man on campus as well.

Agay says, "For something like that to happen on Andrews Campus is very unusual and out of the ordinary. It concerned us greatly."

Kim Keigley owns the Cass Street Shoppe – one of the businesses that was hit. She says the Stefanovic brothers were regular customers, coming into the store at least twice a week since the summer.

"They didn't seem like they ever posed a threat, uh, very quiet, laid back. It's quite a surprise, just goes to show you, you can't trust very many people in this world today."

Police say the Stefanovic brothers have confessed to the crimes and that Jonathan has admitted stealing from other stores in the area...the Rite Aid, Apple Valley, Dollar General, Express Mart and Hardings. Police are also trying to determine where the brothers are from. Because of Andrew's University, there are students and people of all different nationalities living in Berrien Springs. So police are waiting to hear from INS to determine if the brothers are in the United States on visa's or are foreign nationals. 

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