BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — Police say they arrested a suspect after responding Thursday morning to a burglary in process call from a resident inside a home in the 900 block of Nelson Drive.
When officers arrived at the house, located off Roebuck between Five Mile Road and Lawson Road, they saw the suspect trying to flee the scene in a black Dodge Charger, but he had gotten stuck in the muddy yard.
Officers detained the suspect, identified as 26-year-old Leman Oneal III, who they say lives near the house that was burglarized.
The resident told officers she heard a car pull into her driveway, then heard knocking at the back door to the basement. She said she didn’t answer or acknowledge the suspect’s presence. Shortly after hearing the knocks, she heard louder banging noises from the basement, and knew the suspect was inside her home and called police.
Police say Oneal had entered through the window to a bathroom which had been walled off. When the suspect discovered the plywood wall covering the doorway, he tried to knock the boards down. When he couldn’t he climbed out the window and tried to leave, but got his car stuck in the mud.
Police tell us Oneal was out on bond for a charge of burglary in the 1st degree stemming from a Dec. 31, 2016 arrest when he was apprehended inside a home while armed with a .45 caliber handgun just before 5 a.m. The 2016 burglary happened at a home less than a half-mile from the residence on Nelson Drive.
Oneal is charged with burglary in the 2nd degree and is being held without bond. He is being transferred to the Jefferson County Jail.