‘It spread so fast’: A restaurant’s social media post helps IMPD arrest east side thief

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – A blast on social media led to the arrest of an east side thief, who police say stole two security cameras from a local restaurant.

Lena's Sugar Shack said their loyal customers and helpful neighbors are to thank for police catching Steven Stellhorn. Police reports said he stole two of the bar's security cameras, and was caught on camera twice.

"Looked into it like he did a selfie before he took it down, and then he left," Lena's Sugar Shack owner Tony Wilson said. “People don’t want that kind of stuff in this community. They are trying to clean it up. This place is getting bigger and better, the community likes it. They don’t want it coming to their house.”

On Thursdays, and occasional Saturdays, the bar has Bike Night, which can bring dozens of motorcycles to the area. Wilson called it the largest of its kind in central Indiana. He posted the selfie-like surveillance footage on the bar's Facebook page, and said the response was rapid. Loyal customers and nearby neighbors came to the defense of the bar quickly. People were able to put a face to a name.

“Some locals had called up here and said ‘Hey I think he’s at this house next door to me. I saw him earlier at that point,’” Wilson recounted. "I gave police everything, addresses, pictures.”

Police reports said the outpouring of tips helped the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (IMPD) make a quick arrest of Stellhorn.

“There is a trend toward us getting tips through social media," IMPD Public Information Officer Mike Hewitt said. “Anything that's put on there, talk it over with your officer with your detective. You might do something that would help you catch this person, point us in the right direction, then maybe there's some things the detective is going to need to work through that could have been avoided if you just brought them into the discussion before you posted."

Stellhorn is being charged with one count of theft.

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