A West Seattle man has gone from aspiring police officer to accused serial burglar in less than four years.
Sean J. Jeardoe, 20, was once a Seattle Police Explorer. The program is designed to get teenagers and young adults interested in law enforcement. To qualify, you must be a full-time student, maintain a grade-point average of 2.5 and pass a criminal background check.
Jeardoe entered the program when he was 16, but was kicked out due to a "code of conduct violation" involving drug use, the Seattle Police Department told KIRO Radio.
"At the time he was just a kid," said Sgt. Sean Whitcomb, the department's lead spokesperson. "Well, now he's a young man and unfortunately it appears that his behavior has led to committing property crimes at a pretty serious rate."
Four years after he left the program, Jeardoe's last known address is a dilapidated camper on a property in West Seattle. The owner, who lives in a house on the lot, keeps the door padlocked as police have yet to take inventory of the items inside.
"I don't know how much stolen property there is," said the owner, who let KIRO Radio take a look inside.
The camper on Kenyon Street is full of garbage, old food, insects and other items. When asked if there might be drugs, the owner said "there probably were."
Jeardoe has not returned to the camper since July 7, when he and his pregnant girlfriend, who was also living in the camper, were arrested in West Seattle.
At around 4:30 p.m. that day, Seattle police officers located a stolen vehicle in the parking lot of a Thriftway store on SW Morgan Street. Officers conducted a high-risk traffic stop and took Jeardoe and his 33-year-old companion into custody.
According to court documents, officers located a loaded shotgun and a .22 caliber revolver inside the 2012 Nissan Frontier. Also in the vehicle were a number of items believed to have been taken from residential burglaries.
"The officers on scene required multiple hours to catalog and process the stolen items," Sgt. Whitcomb said.
Items inside the vehicle included electronics, jewelry, an autographed baseball, coins and knives. Both Jeardoe and his girlfriend were arrested for possession of the stolen vehicle and investigation of property theft.
"We would consider (Jeardoe) a repeat burglar - so, someone who has done several and someone who would be worth our focus," Sgt. Whitcomb said.
While charges in the case are pending, Jeardoe has a number of other arrests since his departure from the Seattle Police Explorers program.
According to court records, he was charged with possession of cocaine in April 2012, attempted theft in the third degree in June 2012, possession of methamphetamine in August 2012 and vehicle prowl and receiving stolen property in August 2012.
On July 17, the King County Prosecutor's Office charged Jeardoe in a separate residential burglary case, dating back to May 14, 2013. According to court documents, he broke into a neighbor's home in the 3800 block of 40th Ave. S. and stole "a large amount of jewelry, an iPad, and an iPod Touch."
"(The victim) informed officers that their neighborhood has had an increase in burglaries recently," according to the documents. "Also, a former neighbor and known drug user named Sean Jeardoe had been seen hanging out in the neighborhood when another neighbor's house had been burglarized."
Officers subsequently matched fingerprints taken from a windowsill in the home to Jeardoe, according to the documents.
Jeardoe has been released from jail while his cases are pending. Attempts to reach him Thursday were unsuccessful.
The owner of the camper where Jeardoe had been living told KIRO Radio he is not welcome back.
"He had a chance," the man said. "I won't give him another one."