Mears man steals military medals during break-in

February 27, 2023


Mears man steals military medals during break-in

By Allison Scarbrough, Editor

HART — A 41-year-old Mears man pleaded “no contest” to second-degree home invasion and breaking and entering a building with intent in Oceana County’s 51st Circuit Court Monday, Feb. 27.

Dustin Lee Carlson, of 5737 W. 2nd St., stole items of “sentimental value” including a set of Navy medals from a military veteran, according to said Oceana County Prosecutor Joseph Bizon.

The break-in occurred some time between May and October of last year in Mears.

“He stole a lot of personal belongings that were very sentimental to the victims,” said Bizon. “Some things were of monetary value, but more things had sentimental value. Some things are not replaceable.”

Some items have been recovered, although some have not. “It’s really heartbreaking. There was a set of Navy medals earned either by the homeowner or the parent of the homeowner during their military service, and that’s the kind of thing that can never be replaced.” Carlson also stole jewelry and a baseball card collection, along with less sentimental items like power tools.

“It looks like a credit card or a slim object was used to open the door jam.” Carlson knew the victims but they were not related to him, he said. “They knew Dustin for a long time.

“On the home invasion, second degree, his guidelines are 10-19 months, and for the other offense they are 0-11, so we are expecting that he will get a 10-month sentence,” said Bizon. 

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