A Fairbanks man was arrested early Wednesday morning after he allegedly tried to break into a 2nd Avenue coin store by cutting a hole through the floor of the office above it.
James Hollen, 52, is charged with felony second-degree burglary.
According to charging documents, Fairbanks police responded to Alaska Rare Coins at 3:04 a.m. after they were notified the burglary alarm had been activated. The doors were secure, but police could see that several ceiling panels were missing and a fluorescent light fixture was hanging from the ceiling.
A ladder was found lying on the sidewalk on the opposite side of the building and appeared to have been used to access the roof of the Mecca Bar, which is next door to the coin store.
One of the store's owners arrived on scene and unlocked the doors so police could search the building. Police found more broken ceiling tiles on the floor and a ladder partially shoved through a hole that had been cut through the ceiling.
Police checked the office space above the coin store and discovered a window had been forced open and a hole cut through the floor of the room directly above the store.
Police were still clearing the building when one of the officers saw a man walking on the roof and headed toward the 3rd Avenue side of the building. The man, later identified as Hollen, was able to reach the street by climbing down the ladder that had previously been found lying on the ground but was now leaning against the building.
Hollen ran eastbound on 3rd Avenue and was captured after a short foot chase, according to the charges.
Hollen tried to use his cellphone after being placed in a holding cell at the Police Department. Police took the phone and saw that Hollen had texted a friend and asked the person to file his unemployment for him because he would be going to jail for a couple of months, according to the filing.
Former Fairbanks mayor and City Councilman Jerry Cleworth, who co-owns the store with business partner Richard Hanscome, said nothing was stolen from the store.
Contact staff writer Dorothy Chomicz at 459-7582. Follow her on Twitter: @FDNMcrime.