A burglary suspect managed to take a five-figure sum of seafood products from a Ninilchik firm this week, but Alaska State Troopers were soon able to snag a suspect in the fishy business.

Homer resident Garrett Fitzgerald, 53, was ultimately charged in the burglary, according to a Friday trooper dispatch. Word of the case first reached troopers at about 8:30 a.m. Wednesday.

“An investigation showed that at about [2:50 a.m.] a male entered the business and stole money and food,” troopers wrote. “The male then accessed the commercial freezer where the business stored fish and stole over $85,000 worth of fish and crab.”

An employee at Ninilchik-based Tanner’s Fresh Fish Processing, which sells seafood and processes sport-caught fish, confirmed the company was burglarized but declined to provide details due to the pending investigation.

Troopers were able to identify Fitzgerald as the suspect with help from Tanner’s. He was arrested Friday in Soldotna on charges of first-degree and second-degree burglary.

“Some of the stolen fish was located and recovered at the scene,” troopers wrote.

Troopers spokeswoman Megan Peters said the stolen seafood totaled roughly 3,000 pounds by weight, and had been stored in pre-packed 50-pound boxes which Fitzgerald loaded into a truck. One or more additional suspects in the case may remain at large, according to investigators.

Anyone with information about the burglary is asked to call troopers’ Ninilchik post at 907-567-3660.

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