A man connected with a string of burglaries in Sioux Falls has now been robbed of his freedom. 26-year-old Jon Gunvaldson was sentenced to 20 years in prison in connection with 19 residential burglaries between June 2011 and January 2012. And residents in the southeastern part of town have learned a valuable lesson.
Halloween is just around the corner, but residents in the southeastern part of Sioux Falls aren't quite as scared.
"To invade one's property and their privacy needs to be punished as much as it can be," Sioux Falls resident Adrian Mohr said.
Mohr lives on Pennbrook Avenue, where suspect Gunvaldson was seen around the neighborhood last January.
"One evening, I happened to see him walk across the street from his vehicle. He walked across the street and checked the doors on a house," Mohr said.
Even though the burglaries happened more than nine months ago, both law enforcement and residents in southeast Sioux Falls hope the 20-year prison sentence will make other criminals think twice.
"That might send a message to others that drive around this neighborhood thinking they can break in garages or homes when people are gone," Mohr said.
"That's a perfect example of why people need to remember to lock their garages," Sam Clemens with the Sioux Falls Police Department said. "That particular time, we had a lot of different burglary reports and almost exclusively, those were unlocked houses, garage doors."
Even though it's been a while since residents have had to worry about burglars in the neighborhood, they know Gunvaldson won't be a bother anymore.
"He'll have some time to think about it," Mohr said.
Gunvaldson is also facing charges in Lincoln County.