Alleged Burglar of Sister Bay Caught in the Act

A Liberty Grove man has been arrested for one break-in at Sister Bay Hometown Pharmacy and remains a suspect in a burglary of the store only a few days prior. 

Christopher Bartoli, 30, of Liberty Grove was arrested for burglary after a Door County Sheriff’s Office deputy encountered Bartoli attempting to exit the store with a large bag. The store’s intrusion alarm had alerted dispatch.

“It doesn’t happen very often” that someone is caught in the act, said Investigative Sergeant Jason Stenzel. “In anyone’s career, it doesn’t usually happen.”

The deputy took Bartoli into custody without further incident.

A burglary that happened only days before is still under investigation, but Stenzel said Bartoli is a suspect in that break-in as well.

“The first one, we still need to piece together,” Stenzel said.

An investigation of the scene of the second burglary showed that Bartoli allegedly broke the glass of the store’s front door to gain entry. Deputies discovered he had in his possession a cash box containing a small amount of cash, a ball-peen hammer, a box cutter and more than 125 bulk prescription medication boxes and bottles.

During a canvass of the surrounding area, officers discovered a vehicle belonging to the defendant and towed it to the Door County Justice Center.

Pharmacy owner Maria Angelici said the front door was smashed each time. She said the burglar made off with a small amount of controlled substances the first time, then an estimated $17,000 worth of controlled substances the second time. He also took about $250 in cash, Angelici said.

“I’ve worked in pharmacies for nearly 30 years, and I’ve seen a few odd break-ins,” she said. “I’ve seen burglars take elaborate measures to avoid alarm systems. This is the first time here, and I think it’s an isolated incident.”

Angelici said the pharmacy is updating procedures and taking measures to improve security. 

Sheriff’s Office deputies executed a search warrant on Bartoli’s Liberty Grove home. Additional charges of possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia are pending with the Door County District Attorney’s Office.

The investigation remains ongoing, with the execution of additional search warrants still forthcoming, and additional charges expected.

As of the Peninsula Pulse’s deadline, Bartoli remained in the Door County Jail pending a $5,000 cash bond.