On 4/18/15 a resident from Fairdale reported to the Sheriffs Department that a Richard Burtch, DOB 4/21/70, from Stillman Valley, had been seen several times, loading his vehicle with donated items for the victims of the tornado. A deputy spoke with Mr. Burtch and Mr. Burtch unloaded a stroller and a wheel barrow and left the scene.
The next day, Deputies along with Ogle County Sheriffs Office spoke with Mr. Burtch at his residence in Stillman Valley. Located at the residence were approximately 35 brand new tubs still in the boxes, with an additional 8 that had been filled with other donated items such as medicine, toiletries, and food. Also located were three wheel barrows and over a dozen rakes, shovels and brooms.
It was determined that Mr. Burtch had initially been coming into Fairdale to help a family member clean up their house that had been destroyed during the tornado. After the residence and debris had been removed, Mr. Burtch continued to come back so that he could gather more supplies for himself. All supplies were collected and returned back to the Village of Fairdale residents.
Richard Burtch was arrested on one count of Looting and one count of Attempted Looting. He is being held pending Bond of $50,000.