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Crime Prison for burglar accused of hitting about 80 Twin Cities coffee shops, restaurants, other retailers

01:20  16 december  2019
01:20  16 december  2019 Source:   startribune.com

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a man who is smiling and looking at the camera: Deondre R. Cush© Star Tribune/Star Tribune/Ramsey County jail/Star Tribune/TNS Deondre R. Cush

A sentence of nearly 2½ years was given to a man suspected of pulling off more than 80 burglaries across the Twin Cities, targeting small and mostly independent coffee shops, restaurants and other retailers from August 2018 until last October.

Deondre R. Cush, 35, of St. Paul, was sentenced last week in Ramsey County District Court in connection with one of those crimes, namely the April 11 break-in and theft of $565 from the Bay Street Bar and Grill hours before the St. Paul business opened. He fled police for a few moments in an SUV before his capture.

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With credit for time in jail since his arrest, Cush will serve roughly 18½ months in prison for this break-in and the balance on supervised release. However, with the many other allegations against him, it's uncertain when he'll next be out of custody. He's due back in court on Jan. 23 for another hearing concerning dozens of other burglaries.

Prosecutors say Cush often used his cellphone to search for coffee shops and Mexican restaurants that were near him over his more than yearlong spree, but also broke into a Halloween Express costume shop in Richfield and made one of his larger hauls at Capitol Guitars on Selby Avenue in St. Paul, where he came away with more than $2,000 and nine guitars.

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He added pizza shops, Dairy Queens, a grocery and neighborhood bars to his string of crimes, often using a rock to bust out a door window or a pry bar to force his way in. He even branched out geographically, hitting businesses in Mankato and St. Peter. Cush has been getting in trouble with the law throughout his adult life, collecting convictions for burglary, theft, drug possession and aiding an offender in the 2008 murder in St. Paul of 20-year-old Antonio Sims.

Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482

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