MEDINA — Castle Noel, touted as America’s largest yearround indoor Christmas entertainment attraction, was broken into Sunday evening.
Shawn Bazan, 35, of the 800 block of Lafayette Road, Medina, has been charged with breaking-and-entering, a fifth-degree felony.
Castle Noel owner Mark Klaus said he had just gone to Slyman’s Restaurant in Brecksville to watch the city’s fireworks display.
That’s when he started getting notifications on his phone from his security system that someone had broken into his business
“It was horribly scary,” Klaus said.
When the call came into police at 7:32 p.m., Police Chief Ed Kinney said officers were able to respond quickly. He said several cars were already in the general vicinity checking on a spree of break-ins in the parking lot between Medina Library, 210 S. Broadway St., and Dominic’s Restaurant, 221 S. Jefferson St.
Kinney said the initial officer on the scene observed a broken window and a suspect inside the Christmas museum at 260 S. Court St. The individual fled farther into the building while officers established a perimeter outside. Officers with their guns drawn surrounded the building and closed off part of South Court Street.
“It was one guy in a big building,” the police chief said. “It’s like a maze in there.”
Officers entered the building, encountered the suspect and took him into custody without incident.
During a subsequent interview with officers, Bazan reportedly admitted to breaking into several vehicles in the area of South Jefferson Street.
He was charged with three counts of theft, all first-degree misdemeanors. Tools, money and a wallet were taken out of one of the cars, and clothing from another.
“His intent was to steal,” Kinney said.
Bazan was transported to Medina County Jail, where he remained Monday afternoon.
Medina police, Ohio Highway Patrol, Montville Township police and Medina County Sheriff’s Office also responded at Castle Noel.
Video arraignment is set for 10:30 a.m. today from county jail in front of Municipal Court Judge Gary Werner.