June 21, 2018
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Amherst burglary suspects bound for court

By Bill Trotter, BDN Staff

ELLSWORTH, Maine — Three men accused of breaking into and stealing items from several homes in Amherst are expected to appear next week in Hancock County Superior Court.

Two men, Joel D. Hatt, 18, of Hampden and Zachary D. Wright, 18, of Amherst, each face 12 criminal charges as a result of the alleged three-day burglary spree. Another Hampden man, Christopher M. Price, 20, faces nine charges in connection with the alleged burglaries.

All three men are expected to appear in Superior Court on Thursday, Oct. 29, to answer to the charges.

According to court documents, the three men are accused of breaking into three Amherst homes between April 18 and April 20 of this year. One of the houses was burglarized on three consecutive days. Hatt and Wright allegedly burglarized the house on each of those three days, but Price is accused of burglarizing that house only on April 19 and 20.

Stolen from the house that was repeatedly burglarized were two firearms, ammunition, alcohol, antique Turkish pipes, food and electronics, court documents indicate. Investigators estimate that more than $2,000 in damage was done to the house during the burglaries.

On April 18, the three men allegedly caused more than $2,000 damage and stole more than $1,000 worth of silverware, dishes, electronics and household furnishings from another Amherst home. All three men are accused of burglarizing a third home on April 20 and stealing food, knives and two-way radios, according to court documents.

Hatt and Wright each are facing five counts of burglary, five counts of theft and two counts of aggravated criminal mischief. Price is facing three counts of burglary, five counts of theft and one aggravated criminal mischief charge.

If convicted of Class B burglary and theft charges, each man could face as much as 10 years in prison.

Hancock County Deputy District Attorney Carletta Bassano, the prosecutor in the case, was attending a prosecutors conference Wednesday afternoon and could not be reached for comment.

It was not clear from court documents if any of the three accused men has a defense attorney.

Bassano has filed paperwork in court indicating that the state intends to prosecute the defendants jointly, which could result in one trial for all three men if plea agreements cannot be reached.



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