PARKMAN, Maine — The Parkman Municipal Building was broken into Thursday night for the second time in three months.
The break-in was reported at 10:45 p.m. when a neighbor heard the new security alarm, installed after the earlier break-in, activate. The neighbor called the Piscataquis County Sheriff’s Department and then drove his vehicle to the municipal building, where he observed a man coming out of the building, according to Lt. Robert Young of the Piscataquis County Sheriff’s Department.
Young said the neighbor, who was not identified, knocked the burglar down with his vehicle. The burglar got up and ran off into a field across the road from the municipal building, where he was found moments later by deputies and a state police K-9 team, he said.
The man, identified as Richard Ridley, 32, of Parkman, was arrested Thursday night on a probation violation and is being held at the Piscataquis County Jail. He has not yet been charged in connection with the break-in, but Young said he would be charged soon. Ridley was convicted several years ago of Class C robbery in connection to a 2002 incident in which Ridley robbed a clerk at Foxbrook Variety in Dover-Foxcroft at gunpoint.
Young said the police dog traced the path Ridley allegedly took from the municipal building to the field. It is believed that Ridley was frightened by the alarm system after he pried open a back door. Young said Ridley allegedly smashed the power meter on the outside of the building before he entered and once inside he broke an emergency light and smashed the alarm panel and pulled it off the wall in attempting to silence the alarm.
Parkman Administrator Brenda Hartford said the damage was extensive in both break-ins. In the earlier break-in, the town office was ransacked. She said the town has to pay a $1,000 deductible for each event.