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The Vegas Gentlemen’s Club in the town of Darien pictured in 2018.

ELKHORN

A Vegas Gentlemen’s Club manager and his half-brother have been charged with breaking into and attempting to steal money from the strip club in January 2017.

Walworth County prosecutors on June 26 charged Richard B. Gillett, 35, of 318 N. Wisconsin St., Elkhorn, and his half-brother Tyler M. Smith with party to burglary and attempted theft of more than $10,000.

Smith, 28, has a listed address as the Prairie du Chien Correctional Institution. Smith has theft convictions on his record, court records show.

Assistant District Attorney Matthew Leusink said in an email “several factors” explain why charges were filed more than two years after the alleged incident.

He pointed to the length of the investigation, which ranges in the criminal complaint from Jan. 7, 2017—when police were first called—to an interview with a club owner in November 2017 and a crime lab report finished in February 2018.

Leusink said it took time before “a great deal of reports and materials” were sent to his office, which meant it took longer to make a charging decision. He added there were then follow-up meetings with police.

The case began when Walworth County sheriff’s officials went to the Vegas Club, which is in the town of Darien.

Video from security cameras shows a person entering the back of the business, where he got startled and moved back, according to the complaint. The video then shows the person holding a firearm and fleeing.

Police followed footprints from the club and found sweatpants, which tested as having some DNA from Smith and his girlfriend, the complaint states.

Investigators later saw text messages between Gillett and Smith that look as if they were preparing for a robbery, according to the complaint.

“Look u need $$ and so do I,” a portion of a text Smith wrote to Gillett states. “what’s up with what I asked u that day.”

Smith then sent a text, saying, “70% u 30% me,” to which Gillett answered on Jan. 6, 2017, “yes.” The two also texted on the day of the incident, according to the complaint.

Gillett told police in October 2017 they were texting about landscaping.

The owner said there was about $20,000 at the club on the day of the incident, the complaint states. The owner said Gillett knew about the money.

Another owner told a detective Gillett had been working at the club for six or seven months and Smith had worked about three shifts a few months earlier but had not come back, according to the complaint.

Smith is set to make his initial appearance at 1:15 p.m. Friday and Gillett at 1:15 p.m. Thursday, July 18.