Berkshire Burglary Ring: Aaron Tarjick pleads guilty to 59 charges in family affair burglary streak
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PITTSFIELD — A Windsor man who went on a nearly two-year burglary spree while wearing a court-ordered GPS monitor will be sentenced to up to 17 years in prison.
His parents, meanwhile, had their cases continued without findings after admitting to having several pieces of the stolen loot stashed in their home.
Aaron Tarjick, 40, pleaded guilty to nearly 60 charges in connection with the crimes, many of which were committed with his brother.
His sentence, which will be imposed Sept. 22, will take effect after he finishes serving the 19- to 25-year sentence he's currently serving following a 2012 conviction on child sexual assault charges, meaning he could spend up to 42 years in prison.
Aaron's brother, James "Jamie" Tarjick Jr., 44, pleaded guilty last week to 127 counts for thefts in the Berkshires and Hampshire County. He received a 12-year prison sentence, which will also be imposed at a later date; he will remain in custody until that time.
The case against the brothers began in earnest in April 2012 when a piece of luggage stolen from an Amherst home was recovered at the side of Route 116 in Savoy.
An ID tag on the luggage identified the owners and investigators began to look at the possibility there may be a Berkshire connection to a series of unsolved robberies in Hampshire County.
In September 2013, Jamie Tarjick was identified by Amherst Police, who were responding to a possible break-in in that town.
There was not enough evidence to arrest him at that point, but police began to look more closely at the family in connection with the break-ins.
More information that implicated the brothers came following a September 2013 traffic stop in which the operator was in possession of a firearm he said he received from Jamie Tarjick.
The thefts to which Aaron Tarjick admitted Tuesday occurred between October 2010 and May 2012.
Among the other burglaries to which he admitted, Aaron Tarjick said he participated in breaking into a safe and stealing three handguns inside.
It was one of those weapons with which the driver of the car was caught.
Aaron also admitted to stealing a car during that burglary, which was later found abandoned in Richmond. A co-defendant in that case still faces charges.
The same operator also told police he had heard Aaron Tarjick boasting he had been committing housebreaks while wearing his GPS monitor during pretrial probation on his assault charges.
Compilation of that data showed a pattern of Aaron Tarjick being in the vicinities of the homes and vehicles which had been broken into at the times they were robbed.
He admitted to breaking into those homes and vehicles and stealing electronics, power tools, cash, purses, televisions and jewelry among other items.
James Tarjick Sr., 63, and his wife, Nancy, 62, admitted to nine counts each of receiving stolen property over $250.
Their cases were continued for two years, during which time they will be required to stay out of any further legal trouble.
Attorneys Marc Vincelette and David Pixley, representing James and Nancy Tarjick, respectively, asked Judge John Agostini to consider continuing their cases for six months rather than the two years sought by prosecutors.
Vincelette pointed out that the couple has already served two years of pretrial probation while the case was working its way through court with no trouble.
He also noted, the couple would be unable to visit their children in prison until the probationary period ends and their cases officially close and felt the six months would be more appropriate.
"This was clearly a case that's driven by the kids," he said, and added the parents had nothing to do with any sales of stolen merchandise nor with the planning or execution of any of the robberies.
Pixley said the couple's desire to be able to see their children would be enough incentive to not incur any new criminal charges.
"If they do, they'll never see their sons," he said.
Agostini took the state's two-year recommendation.
The investigation culminated in a January 2015 multi-agency search of the homes of the Tarjick siblings and their parents.
According to Assistant Berkshire District Attorney Joseph Yorlano, during the search of the parents' Windsor home several items that had been reported stolen were positively identified, including a television that was in the living room and running during the search.
A piece of luggage from the set that was stolen from Amherst and began the investigation into the Berkshire County connection was also found.
Other recovered stolen items included tools engraved with the owner's initials, a log splitter, a generator, binoculars and jewelry.
Yorlano described the elder Tarjicks' home as a storage facility for the stolen items.
In all, Aaron Tarjick pleaded guilty in Berkshire Superior Court to 59 counts; seven counts of unarmed burglary, nine counts of breaking and entering in the nighttime with the intent to commit a felony, 13 counts of breaking into a motor vehicle in the nighttime with the intent to commit a felony, 25 counts of larceny over $250, three counts of larceny of a firearm and one count each of larceny of a motor vehicle and larceny under $250.
Yorlano said Aaron Tarjick also has open charges from Hampshire County and those will be handled by the Northwestern District Attorney's office.
The investigation was conducted by members of the Pittsfield, Amherst, Hadley, Northampton, Hatfield and Easthampton police departments, Deputies from the Berkshire County Sheriff's Office and state police detectives assigned to the Berkshire District Attorney's Office.
Contact Bob Dunn at 413-496-6249.
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