A local man has been sentenced to 8-10 years in prison for his role in at least 16 auto burglaries in Cody and six break-ins at a storage unit complex in Powell.
Bryan Nihei, 31, was sentenced by Judge Bill Simpson on May 18 and was also assessed $3,749 in restitution as part of a guilty plea agreement.
Nihei has been connected to a series of thefts that occurred in Cody and Powell through December and January last winter.
His string of crimes came to an end when Cody resident Colton Johannsen performed a citizen’s arrest of Nihei on Feb.1 while he was in the middle of breaking into a vehicle.
A total of 27 auto burglaries occurred that were possibly connected to Nihei.
The first four auto burglaries started in mid-December, when Nihei breached vehicles in the County Road 2AB area of Cody and stole binoculars and a few wallets, one of which contained a Social Security card.
Cody police were able to connect Nihei with 13 auto burglaries, including a string of nine vehicles broken into early Jan. 29 on Tri Power Court and Elm Avenue.
According to the Park County Sheriff’s Office, it received a report of 10 storage units broken into at Dash Storage, with items including jewelry and a 7mm Remington rifle stolen. Nihei will have to pay $1,400 in restitution to the owner of the rifle.
In the investigation, Nihei admitted to living out of his storage unit at the facility.
Nihei was initially charged with 21 felonies but only ended up being charged with one count for burglary. Those charges were dismissed with prejudice. He also must pay $275 in court fees.
In a separate case, Nihei was sentenced to 2.5-5 years in prison in Big Horn County in May for theft of $3,685 in rare coins. He will serve this sentence concurrently and must also pay $3,000 in court fines and $3,658 in restitution.