Watchful neighbors help catch accused car burglars in Hermitage

(Photo: WKRN)

HERMITAGE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Neighbors in a Hermitage apartment complex alerted police Sunday night that several men were pulling car handles in the parking lot.

Officers arrived to the Cherry Creek Apartments and used information from residents to track down Phillip Waller.

According to the arrest affidavit, police found the 20-year-old hiding in bushes after running. Police also found with him two juveniles, ages 13 and 17.

Police found out the group was also going in and out of a vacant apartment. When officers went to the apartment, they found several stolen items, as well as a handgun.

According to police, Waller admitted that the gun was his.

Phillip Waller (Courtesy: Metro-Nashville Police Department)

Waller is charged with two counts of felony burglary of a motor vehicle, misdemeanor evading arrest, misdemeanor weapon possession and misdemeanor criminal trespassing.

The juveniles are charged with four counts of criminal trespassing, burglary of a motor vehicle and violation of the juvenile curfew.

Metro police are working to return the items recovered to their rightful owners.

The first step is for victims to file a police report for the stolen items, and then they can contact the detectives at their precinct.

MNPD also said you should take pictures of your items and etch serial numbers into your items. That can make identifying common items easier for both the detectives and victims.