Prolific car thief charged again


BATAVIA — An imprisoned car thief has been charged with stealing three more cars, state police said.

Edward G. Ruckdeschel, who is serving his seventh prison term, was charged with three counts of third-degree grand larceny after an investigation into car thefts in the town of Batavia and Bethany.

Troopers said Ruckeschel stole cars Aug. 28, 2019, in Batavia, Jan. 29, 2020 ,in Bethany and on Feb. 6, 2020, in Batavia.

The latter two car thefts came just weeks after Ruckdeschel led police on a high-speed chase through Orleans and into Genesee County. He had stolen a car from a residence in Orleans.

He was released because of bail reform laws and stole at least five more cars after his release, prompting law enforcement officials to lambast the new bail reform laws.

Ruckdeschel did not commit any violent felonies under the law, leading to his release.

Ruckdeschel was sentenced in August to two-to-four years in prison for a rash of car thefts that happened between July 2019 and in early 2020.

On the day he was sentenced he was charged with stealing a car. The following day came another charge as more police agencies linked him to car thefts.

In April, Ruckdeschel was charged with burglary and seven counts of grand larceny.

Ruckdeschel has served much of his adult life in prison.

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