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Chester County Press

Three arrested for home burglaries

09/08/2015 11:11AM ● By J. Chambless

By John Chambless
Staff Writer

Two men from Landenberg and a woman from Avondale have been charged in burglaries that netted them jewelry, electronics and guns that they then sold or traded for drugs in Wilmington, Del.

New Garden Township Police said they responded to a burglary on Aug. 15 at a home in the 300 block of Bucktoe Road in Avondale. The homeowners said they returned from vacation to find the front door unlocked and an upstairs bedroom door forced open. Stolen items included jewelry and five handguns.

Investigators were told by the homeowners that their daughter's boyfriend, Tyler Snyder, 24, of Landenberg, had stolen items from the home in the past. During an interview, the daughter, Hunter Zunino, 18, of Avondale, said she had dated Snyder for about a year, and that while her parents were away, Snyder had spent the night at the home. Police learned that Snyder and his friend, Benjamin DeRitter, 19, of Landenberg, had traveled to Wilmington, Del., to buy drugs with the proceeds from the stolen property.

On Aug. 16, police interviewed DeRitter and found an image on his cellphone of a Glock model 36 semi-automatic .45 caliber handgun. The image was dated Aug. 9, which was when Snyder was in the burglarized home. DeRitter confessed to conspiring with Snyder to sell two handguns in Wilmington, and said he knew the guns were stolen and loaded as they drove to the city. DeRitter said they sold the guns to a drug dealer in exchange for several bundles of heroin, crack cocaine and money.

Snyder also confessed to selling the guns during the week of Aug. 10, and getting heroin and money in exchange.

Both men are facing charges including theft of firearms, conspiracy and burglary.

Investigators from New Garden Township Police are working with officials in Delaware and Wilmington to recover the stolen guns. One handgun was recovered during a traffic stop, during which police found the gun on a suspect wanted for attempted homicide.

The stolen handguns are:

A Glock Model 36, .45 caliber semi-automatic handgun;

A Springfield Model 1911, .45 caliber semi-automatic handgun;

A Stirling .22 caliber semi-automatic handgun;

A Stirling .25 caliber semi-automatic handgun.

A news release issued by New Garden Police on Sept. 4 reported that the same three people were charged in connection with an Aug. 11 burglary at a home in the 800 block of Chandler Drive. Jewelry and electronics were taken from the home while the homeowner was away from July 31 to Aug. 2. The victim's son is Benjamin DeRitter. Investigators discovered that Snyder and Zunino had sold items matching the description provided by the victim to stores in Wilmington. Snyder confessed to conspiring with DeRitter to sell the stolen property. All three defendants were charged with theft, receiving stolen property and related offenses.

Anyone with information about this case is asked to contact Sgt. Keith Cowdright at 610-268-2907, ext. 102, or email [email protected].

To contact Staff Writer John Chambless, email [email protected].