POLICE BEAT

3 UMaine students accused of breaking into Oronoka

Posted April 27, 2011, at 10:02 p.m.

ORONO, Maine — Police officers arrested three University of Maine students after catching them inside the Oronoka restaurant building, which police believe they were preparing to plunder.

The trio reportedly had placed some of the former college town restaurant’s kitchen equipment and other items, including wicker baskets, near the car they arrived in.

Arrested and charged with criminal trespass were: Patrick Keogh, 19, originally from Rhode Island; Aaron Ricarda, 19, whose address was listed as the University of Maine; and Zachary Bodkin, 18, who is from Connecticut, Orono police Sgt. Scott Scripture said Wednesday.

The students, who were taken to Penobscot County Jail after their arrests, since have been released on bail, Scripture said. He said the matter remains under investigation and other charges might follow.

Scripture said Orono police had been keeping an eye on the building since last week, when lights were seen inside. Though the building has not been heated in years, the electricity remains turned on, he said.

Shortly after 6 p.m. Tuesday, Orono police Sgt. Scott LaJoie was driving by and spotted the car the three suspects arrived in parked close by, and stopped to investigate. When he did, he could hear voices coming from inside and called for assistance, which came in the form of Officer Jason Zalva.

Scripture said police believed the teenagers planned to help themselves to commercial pots and pans, bar memorabilia and other items inside the former restaurant, which opened in the 1950s and served up its signature steaks, free birthday cakes, glass boots of beer and a seemingly endless parade of appetizers until it closed in late 2003 after the death of its owner, Nathan Kobritz.

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