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Edgerton man allegedly burglarizes parishioners

PIPESTONE -- An Edgerton man allegedly scoped out church attendance before leaving the service early to burglarize the houses of parishioners, according to a criminal complaint filed this week in Pipestone County District Court.

Using that plan, Dale Eugene Jasper, 53, didn't get away with much -- he later told authorities he took $4 from one residence and about $30 from another, then gambled his stolen funds away at a casino in Redwood Falls.

The complaint states an Edgerton man reported to a Pipestone County Deputy that Jasper had entered his residence and the residence of his son on Sunday morning.

The man said he was at home when the front door of his house opened and Jasper walked in, hollering out, "Is anybody home?"

The witness said he talked briefly with Jasper, who then left in a green Pontiac Bonneville.

He watched as Jasper got in his car and drove from his residence to that of his son.

The man got in his own vehicle and drove to his son's house, where he entered and saw Jasper run out of a bedroom.

He confronted Jasper, asking him what he was doing, and Jasper allegedly stated he was looking for money. Jasper then left that residence and drove away.

The Pipestone County Deputy had been one of the people in church that morning and had witnessed Jasper leaving the service before it was through.

The witness' son said he also saw Jasper leave church early, as did another victim who called authorities later in the day and reported he and his girlfriend had returned home from the church and found her purse dumped out on a bed.

The witness' son said he searched his home to see if there was anything missing and noticed two $2 bills had been taken off a table.

The second victim believed about $15 was missing from the dumped purse.

His own son had been doing chores across the street and noticed a green Pontiac Bonneville in the yard.

Shortly after 5 p.m., a deputy located a car matching the description of Jasper's vehicle and followed it to Jasper's residence.

At the law enforcement center, Jasper allegedly admitted he had gone into the first residence to look for money and was surprised when he found the man at home.

He said he then went to the son's home, entered through an unlocked door and removed two $2 bills from a bedroom, then went to the other victim's residence and stole about $30 from a purse.

Jasper allegedly said he left that residence and went to a casino, where he lost the money playing blackjack.

He is charged with three felony-level counts of burglary.

Jasper was previously charged with burglary and theft in 2009 in Nobles County.

He pleaded guilty to a burglary charge and was sentenced to 45 days in jail in May 2010.

He is currently on probation for that conviction.

He was charged with nine separate counts of issuing dishonored checks in 2010 in Murray, Nobles, Rock, Lyon and Pipestone counties.