South Sound News

Tacoma police make arrest in December Bellevue Rare Coins ‘movie-style’ burglary

Detectives in Tacoma arrested a man in connection to December’s “movie-style” burglary of a Bellevue Rare Coins in Tacoma.

According to court documents, Robert Mearl McGee was charged on Jan. 25 and accused of cutting a hole in the wall of a vacant building and stealing $300,000 worth of gold coins, silver coins, gold bars, and silver bars.

Bellevue Rare Coins’ owner, Eric Hoolahan, said the burglars broke into the vacant building next door. They used a sledgehammer to break through the cinderblock and a saw to cut through the drywall to get into Hoolahan’s business.

He said he thinks the burglars knew the room’s layout because they put something on a pole to block a motion sensor in that room. It tripped an alarm, but they avoided the camera in the room so when the owner checked in real-time, he only saw an empty room.

“I think that was the goal was to make it look like a malfunction,” said Hoolahan. “It’s very strange, they understood quite a few things here.”

Prosecutors say about $5,000 in damage was done.

Detectives say they found a blue crowbar with the name “MCGEE” engraved on its side at the scene.

Police also said they received several tips from people who said they saw McGee with bags with gold and silver bars and gold and silver coins.

Another tipster said McGee told them he committed the burglary at Bellevue Rare Coins and sold some of the coins.

Once police got a warrant for McGee’s home and his mother’s home, detectives said they found gold and silver coins matching those taken in the burglary.

Police said they also found a shoebox at his mother’s house with more gold coins matching those taken in the burglary.

McGee was charged with burglary, malicious mischief, and theft. He was released after posting $35,000 bail.