PORTER TOWNSHIP | A Lake Eliza man was charged with three counts of theft in connection after authorities allege they found items in his possession from recent burglaries.

County and local authorities amped up patrols in the Lake Eliza-area after more than 11 thefts and burglaries were reported over a three week span, according to the Porter County Sheriff's Department.

Nathan Kiaurakis was arrested after being seen crouching down in his Jeep near the area of Cherrywood Lane and Split Rail Court on Saturday.

His SUV was parked in a suspicious area and then was seen hiding in a tree line next to a vehicle in a driveway, according to a sheriff's department news release.

When officers confronted him, he fled the area but was taken into custody a short time later. Items from several thefts were found in his vehicle, Porter County Sheriff's Department spokesman Sgt. Larry LaFlower said.

He was charged with three counts of theft, attempted theft and one count of resisting law enforcement.

Detectives were also investigating the other recent thefts and burglaries to see if Kiaurakis was connected to them, including seven reported thefts from vehicles in the Aberdeen subdivision of Center Township.