Car thief hit with eight new felonies


BATAVIA — The only thing that stopped Edward G. Ruckdeschel from stealing cars happened on Aug. 10. That was the day he was sentenced to two-to-four years in state prison for a series of car thefts, some of which happened when Ruckdeschel was free on pending car theft charges.

Still, even after he was sentenced to state prison, the stolen car arrests didn’t stop there.

On the same day he was sentenced, he was charged with stealing a car. A day later he was hit with another larceny charge for a separate car theft.

And on Friday, Ruckdeschel, who is serving time at Marcy Correctional Facility in Oneida County, was hit with eight new felony charges.

Genesee County sheriff’s investigators had been investigating a rash of car thefts that began in July 2019.

Ruckdeschel was always the main suspect, investigators said.

He was charged Friday with third-degree burglary, four counts of third-degree grand larceny and three counts of fourth-degree grand larceny.

The charges filed in August last year remain pending in County Court.

Ruckdeschel last year became the local “poster boy” for bail reform laws.

He twice stole cars after being released with appearance tickets for other car thefts.

In January 2020, Ruckdeschel was arrested after he led police on a high-speed chase after stealing a car in Orleans County. The chase entered Genesee and ended in Monroe County, where Ruckdeschel crashed and was taken into custody.

He faced numerous charges in three counties but was released because of bail reform.

He stole at least three more cars after his release.

Ruckdeschel is serving his seventh state prison term.

He has served more than 18 years in prison since his first term in 1986 for two criminal possession of stolen property convictions in Monroe County, where he possessed millions of dollars worth of stolen items.

His other terms were for stealing cars, other grand larcenies and a series of burglaries at marinas in Orleans County. He at least once led police on a high-speed chase in Monroe County after he was caught stealing cable from a construction site and fled in a stolen car.

His last sentence was for stealing a car in Monroe County in 2017 and his parole had just expired when he was arrested in December 2019.

Johnson Newspapers 7.1