ANOKA, Minn. (KMSP) - An arrest has been made in the murder of 95-year-old Al Loehlein, the Anoka County sheriff’s office announced Thursday.
The suspect, identified as Isaiah Montrell Thomas, 27, from Anoka, has been booked into the Anoka Jail, but charges have not yet been filed.
Loehlein was found murdered in his home on the 1200 block of 5th Avenue South around 10:45 a.m. on Monday after a family member stopped by to deliver groceries.
The sheriff’s office said Lohlein was last seen alive by his family on Thanksgiving when they dropped him off at his home.
Thomas has a criminal history that dates back to his teen years. He was charged and convicted as an adult for an attempted burglary in 2005.
In the years that followed, his criminal history included theft, burglary and domestic violence convictions.
Most recently, he was charged with credit card fraud. He was working at a Wendy’s in Rogers when he stole credit card information from a drive through customer.
In April of 2016, he was charged with burglary. According to court documents, a St. Paul woman came home to find Thomas taking a laptop and speakers from her home. He was arrested five minutes later attempting to burglarize another home in the neighborhood.
Police said Loehlein’s home was ransacked, the 95-year-old the victim of “homicidal violence.” Cmdr. Paul Sommer of the Anoka County Sheriff’s office said based on early evidence, it appears whomever entered the home was looking for an easy target.
“He lives alone and someone took advantage of that fact and this gentleman paid the price with his life,” said Cmdr. Sommer.
Loehlein’s nephew, Bart Ward, said Loehlein has lived in the home alone since his wife died about 10 years ago. He described Loehlein as young-hearted and dapper.
“If you looked up the word gentleman in the dictionary, that was Al,” said Ward. “95 going on 75. Probably looked ten or 15 years younger than he was.”
A neighbor told police they saw a man dressed in “winter clothing” walking down the driveway Saturday morning.