July 23, 2018
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Rockport couple suspected in jewelry thefts may have skipped town

By Abigail Curtis, BDN Staff

BELFAST, Maine — Police believe they are closer to solving a series of midcoast burglaries that have resulted in more than $20,000 worth of jewelry being stolen from residences.

Warrants have been issued for the arrest of a Rockport couple believed to be responsible, but Detective Sgt. Bryan Cunningham of the Belfast Police Department said that the two appear to have skipped town on Wednesday.

He did not release the names of the two suspects, in an effort to not tip them off to the police interest.

Over the last several weeks, law enforcement officials from Searsport, Lincolnville and Belfast police departments and from the Knox County Sheriff’s Office have been meeting to share information about a series of burglaries that seemed to have common factors.

Belfast police Chief Jeff Trafton said that diligent detective work led the officers to the Rockport couple. Cunningham had been checking lists of names of people who had sold jewelry to a Bangor-based firm that buys scrap gold and silver, the chief said.

Over the last several months, the Rockport man and woman were consistently selling thousands of dollars of jewelry for scrap, Cunningham said. Altogether, he said, more than $20,000 worth of gold and silver was sold by the couple to the Bangor outfit.

The value of the jewelry is likely to be much higher than what was paid for it as scrap metal, Cunningham said, adding that such outfits usually just melt items down for the gold.

The high volume of jewelry sold by the Rockport couple struck him as suspicious, and police interviewed them.

Detective Don Murray of the Knox County Sheriff’s Office obtained a warrant in the last couple of days, Cunningham said, but when police were ready to execute it, the two were nowhere to be found.

“They’ll get picked up sooner or later,” Trafton said.

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