The Benton County Sheriff’s Office is seeking the public’s help in identifying three suspects that burglarized a multi-million dollar home in Bentonville.
The residential burglary occurred on May 8 at a property on East McNelly Road in Bentonville, and the home had security cameras installed, providing the video footage of the three suspects, according to the Benton County Sheriff’s Office.
The footage shows one male exiting the residence with a microwave and another male exiting with cleaning supplies from the residence.
John Schmelzle, one of the property owners, said he and his business partner bought the house as an investment.
“We bought it when it was partially complete and are finishing the interior construction,” he said.
Authorities said there was no interior or exterior damage found in the home, which indicates there was no forced entry. They believe the suspects entered the home through an unlocked door on the patio.
Schmelzle said he believes a contractor may have accidentally left a door unlocked.
“I’m assuming that the last person that was in there doing some construction left it unlocked,” he said.
Ken Childers lives right up the street from where the burglary happened. He said it’s a good thing security cameras were installed in the home.
“Kids are going to be kids and if they get a chance to party in a house like that they are going to do it,” he said. “So, I think with a house like that, you need to protect it anyway you can and that’s a pretty good way to protect it,” he said.
Portfolionwa.com lists the property as a 48.54 acre estate. The 15,000 square foot home is on the market and is listed at $3.4 million.
Schmelzle said the suspects may have been curious about what the house looked like inside.
“I think what happened was that they got through the gate and they were just curious as to what it looked like inside,” he said.
Debbie Williamson has lived in the area for 28 years. She said a burglary happening so close to her home is scary.
“Those kids had no business being in there,” she said. “They just need to mind their own business. But I mean when you think about it, you feel like you have to lock your doors and even your cars,” she said. “Twenty years ago, you didn’t feel that way in this area.”
All the suspects are white males between the ages of late teens to mid 20s, the sheriff’s office said. They were driving a Toyota Tacoma pickup with a camper shell.
Anyone who can help identify these suspects is encouraged to call the Benton County Sheriff’s Office at 479-271-1008 or the Crimestoppers Tip Line at 790-TIPS.