Vincent Gillen of Belchertown charged with breaking into Lincoln Avenue home in Amherst; similar incident reported at Lincoln Apartments

Last modified: Thursday, August 28, 2014
AMHERST — An intruder was arrested after allegedly breaking into a Lincoln Avenue home early Thursday morning, less than an hour after a similar break-in was reported by a resident at Lincoln Apartments, according to Amherst and University of Massachusetts police.

Vincent R. Gillen, 18, of 36 Bay Path Road, Belchertown, was arrested at 4:10 a.m. at a Lincoln Avenue residence on charges of breaking and entering during the nighttime to commit a felony, larceny from a building, possession of a fake identification and possession of a Class B drug, said Amherst Police Detective Jamie Reardon.

Police received a call from a resident about the break-in, and there was no evidence of forced entry, Reardon said.

UMass Police Chief John Horvath said his department was notified about the Lincoln Apartments break-in at 3:38 a.m. and issued an email alert to the campus community.

Deputy Police Chief Patrick Archbald said police were called by the lone occupant of the apartment, a woman, who said an intruder had come in through the open bathroom window and woke her up because the bathroom door was shut and locked. The intruder appeared to leave through the same window, because the door was still locked when police arrived.

Horvath said UMass and Amherst police “are working together to determine if the crimes are connected,” Horvath said.

According to the email alert, the incidents are similar and “one possible suspect (is) described as a white male, approximately 6 feet tall with short curly blond hair.”

The alert also gives this advice: “Take caution and be sure to lock your residence. Contact UMPD with any information 413-545-2121.”

Scott Merzbach can be reached at smerzbach@gazettenet.com.