Chief of Police
2 Olde North Road
Chelmsford, MA 01824
For Immediate Release
Tuesday, July 22, 2014
Contact: John Guilfoil
WANTED — Chelmsford Police Identify Burglary Suspect By Back-Tracking His Apartment Keys, Left at the Crime Scene
CHELMSFORD — Police Chief James Murphy announces that Chelmsford Police are seeking to question a Lowell man in connection with a burglary, after police found his apartment keys at the scene of the crime.
JOEL NIEVES, AGE 28, of LOWELL is wanted for arrest by Chelmsford Police on charges of armed burglary.
NIEVES is a career criminal with an extensive record, which includes a history of home invasion and breaking and entering.
Chelmsford Police responded to an address on Littleton Road on June 28, 2014, where they found a resident who had returned from after spending a day out of state to find his sliding glass door opened. As the resident called 911, the suspect approached and threatened to kill the resident. The resident swung a flashlight at the suspect, who fled the home.
Police believe that the suspect had already left the residence but returned to retrieve a black backpack that he left at the scene, when he came upon the resident.
Police found multiple items in the backpack that appeared to be stolen, including baseball cards, a iPad, a digital camera, a high school class ring with the resident’s name on it, and a signed Nomar Garciaparra baseball. Police also found a set of keys in the backpack that did not belong to the resident.
A Chelmsford Police detective consulted with a local locksmith, who determined that some of the keys, with their identifying numbers, belonged to an apartment complex in Lowell, which NIEVES lives in.
Chelmsford Police were then informed that NIEVES had been arrested by Lowell Police recently on multiple larceny warrants.
Police interviewed a woman living at the apartment that the keys matched up to. She identified herself as the mother of NIEVES’S child and confirmed that the suspect occasionally stays at the apartment. NIEVES’S name was also visible on the mailbox for the apartment.
NIEVES is not currently in custody, so Chelmsford Police have sought out a warrant for his arrest, charging him with the Littleton Road break-in.
These are allegations. All suspects are considered innocent until proven guilty.