NCPD catches burglary suspects after they cash in stolen lottery tickets

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- Burglary suspects may have been hoping for "Wild Money" but their "Beginner's Luck" ran out when they tried to cash in their stolen lottery tickets for "Jumbo Bucks."

North Charleston police have arrested three men. Officers say two of them broke into a store and stole, not only money, but cigarettes, condoms and lottery tickets as well.

According to a police report, officers responded to the 'Neighbor Store' on East Montague Avenue Thursday morning. The owner told them that she came in to open up and found the safe open and merchandise missing.

She told police that $400 in paper money, $150 in rolled coins, about $60 in lottery tickets and an unknown amount of cigarettes and condoms were missing from the store. She also told police that the burglar had come in through the roof and air conditioning unit.

Police say video surveillance showed a black male in the store taking the merchandise and putting everything into plastic bags. The report says video also showed the suspect had cut himself and blood evidence was found on nails up on the roof. Two other unknown suspects are reportedly in the video acting a lookouts.

The reporting officer says not long after he left the crime scene, he got a call from the SC Lottery Commission saying one of the stolen lottery tickets was cashed at a nearby gas station.

NCPD say they detained "Willie" Miller at the Stay Over Lodge after he was identified as the man who cashed the stolen tickets. He told police that "a guy he knows came to his room and asked him to cash some tickets."

After reviewing all of the video surveillance and finding "Wild Money," "Beginner's Luck" and "Jumbo Bucks" lottery tickets in the trash can, NCPD arrested three suspects in the burglary. They also found the coin wrappers in the trash.

Derrick Felder, 38, and 44-year-old Wilbur Hooks are charged with burglary in the second degree for the break in.

Rickie Miller, 55, is charged with violation of the South Carolina Lottery Act (cashing the lottery tickets).

Police say Hooks and Miller were both at the motel, Felder was located at his residence.