Plymouth man charged with robbery after threatening to shock woman, police say

Posted June 02, 2011, at 6:10 p.m.
Jeff Roberts
Photo courtesy of Penobscot County Jail
Jeff Roberts

PLYMOUTH, Maine — A Plymouth man was charged with Class B robbery Thursday for forcing his way into a woman’s home and threatening to give her an electric shock before stealing some of her possessions, police said. He will be held without bail at the Penobscot County Jail until at least June 21.

Jeff Roberts, 30, allegedly held a device to the woman’s throat and told her he would shock her if she didn’t give him money, according to Penobscot County Sheriff’s Deputy James Kennedy.

“It is not known if it was a Taser or a threat of a Taser,” said Kennedy. “He did not harm her, though he threatened the use of harm.”

On Thursday afternoon, Superior Court Justice Kirk Studstrup ordered Roberts held without bail until June 21 when a hearing on a motion to revoke Roberts’ bail on an unrelated burglary charge stemming from a May 9 incident can be held, according to the Penobscot County District Attorney’s Office.

Studstrup set bail at $10,000 cash on the charges related to the home invasion, which include stealing drugs and unlawful possession of drugs, according to Brendan Trainor, assistant district attorney for Penobscot County.

Kennedy said Roberts forced his way into the woman’s home on Moosehead Trail in Plymouth at about 3 p.m. Wednesday. Kennedy would not say what items were stolen because they are considered evidence. Roberts knew the woman based on a single encounter with her, though Kennedy declined to detail the circumstances of that meeting.

“It wasn’t random,” Kennedy told the Bangor Daily News on Wednesday.

In addition to the robbery charge, Roberts is being held for violating bail conditions stemming from a burglary and theft of copper pipe he allegedly committed on May 9.

In a bizarre coincidence, dispatchers received a 911 call from Roberts’ residence in Plymouth as officers were still at the Moosehead Trail residence investigating the robbery.

“We believe it was a misdial from his residence,” said Kennedy. When officers responded to the call they were able to determine that Roberts was present and they arrested him without incident.

Kennedy said without the 911 call, Roberts might not have been arrested so quickly, though he was already the primary suspect after being identified by his victim.

Roberts’ criminal history includes a conviction for aggravated assault in July 2000 when he and another man badly beat a third person before throwing him in the trunk of a car and speeding off on a county road in December 1999. He was sentenced to nine years in prison with all but two suspended.

If convicted of the most serious charge in the incident Wednesday, Roberts faces up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.

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