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Man faces burglary, drug charges

A suspect was arrested again one day after he was let out of jail.

Joseph R. Guerts, 37, Waupaca, is charged with burglary, two counts of felony bail jumping, illegal possession of prescription drugs and possession of drug paraphernalia.

He is currently in custody on a $2,500 cash bond.

On Feb. 6-7, Guerts was charged in two separate cases with a string of burglaries, most of which occurred at the apartment complex at 500 High Street, Waupaca, where he lived.

Initially held on a $500 cash bond with a $1,500 signature bond that required a co-signer, Guerts’ bond was amended to a $2,000 signature bond on Wednesday, Feb. 28.

Shortly before midnight on Thursday, March 1, a tenant of the High Street complex reported seeing Guerts banging on the window of one of the apartments, then enter the building.

Waupaca Police Officer Matthew Batte drove to the complex and began looking for Guerts.

According to the criminal complaint, Batte saw a light on in one of the apartments. He recognized the apartment from an emergency medical call from the prior day and believed the tenant was not at home.

As he approached the lighted window, Batte saw Guerts inside the apartment, inspecting the contents of a bathroom vanity.

Batte notified dispatch that Guerts was in the apartment, and three other officers were dispatched to the scene.

The officers stationed themselves at both entrances to the building.

Batte detained Guerts as he exited the building and questioned him about what he had in his possession.

Guerts said he had two things that the apartment’s tenant asked him to remove.

Batte then found two metal pipes commonly used for smoking methamphetamine in the right pocket of Guerts’ sweatshirt.

He also found 20 loose pills and a screwdriver in Guerts’ left pocket, the complaint says.

The pills were Trazadone, a sedative and anti-depressant medication.

Guerts reportedly said the tenant asked him to clean out the apartment and he was doing it as a favor.

Batte found an empty prescription bottle for Trazadone in the apartment.

Waupaca Police Sgt. Brent Krueger contacted the tenant who was in the ICU at the veterans hospital in Madison.

The tenant said he had not spoken with Guerts in more than a month, had not asked for his help and did not give him permission to enter his apartment.

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