Burglary ring suspects make first court appearance

Ethan Alberts and Crystal White

GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) – Brown County investigators say they’ve arrested at least half of a busy burglary ring.

Two of four suspects made their first appearances in Brown County court Friday. Ethan Alberts and Crystal White, both 24, are being held on probable cause, suspected of burglarizing dozens of storage units throughout the county. All of the charges against them are felonies.

They were arrested after a months-long investigation that began in November.

Prosecutors say White confessed to taking part in several burglaries in November and December.

“It’s a strong case given her statements,” Court Commissioner Paul Burke acknowledged.

This case is so large, the district attorney’s office says it needs more time to go over all the reports.

In court, prosecutors suggested some of the burglaries were to pay for drug habits.

The district attorney’s office said one of the roughly 30 charges Alberts faces is for stealing a firearm during one of the burglaries and selling it for methamphetamine.

“From the State’s perspective, there’s a need to protect the public from unregulated transfer of firearms in our community,” prosecutor Caleb Saunders said.

While White sat quietly through the hearing, Alberts did not. He apologized to the court for his actions.

“Without promise, without anything, I felt terrible about my actions and I came forward without anyone even knowing they’re investigating these burglaries, and I came forth and confessed. I knew my actions were very wrong and I feel terrible. I have had a drug problem and I have since been clean since I went to jail in December,” he said.

“I have wanted to change my life after this,” Alberts said. “I’ve been destroying my family and friends and everything for too long.”

Alberts was granted a $10,000 signature bond because of his behavior since being arrested in December in an unrelated case.

White’s bond was set at 10,000 cash.