ROCHESTER, N.H. — Police arrested and charged a man with theft and burglary after determining he had entered a Walnut Street home, stolen property, and was found in possession of several items including, a machete knife, a hatchet, and duct tape Saturday night.
Justin Fuller, 25, of 11 Whipple Road in Kittery, Maine, was charged on a warrant out of Rochester for receiving stolen property, criminal trespass, theft and possession of burglary tools — all misdemeanors — along with burglary, a Class-A felony, and prowling, which is a violation. According to a Rochester Police Department press release, Fuller was delivered to Strafford County House of Corrections and held on $10,000 cash bail.
At 11:12 p.m. on Saturday, police responded to 124 Walnut St. for reports of a possible burglary in progress. The homeowners initially called when they returned home and suspected someone was inside their residence.
Police, upon arrival, determined a suspect entered the home and fled when the homeowners returned. After using a K-9 unit, officers found a bicycle track in the wet grass a few houses down from the scene. They subsequently tracked the route and found Fuller, hiding behind a dumpster. He had a maroon bicycle and a gray, checkered backpack with him.
Officials determined Fuller had an active warrant for receiving stolen property out of Rochester and placed him under arrest before even checking his backpack.
Inside the bag they found an Airsoft pistol, machete, duct tape, hatchet, hammer, screwdriver, thin metal wire, pry bar, bug spray, binoculars and a large coffee container full of change. Fuller was also wearing a headlamp flashlight and had a key to the residence at 124 Walnut St., which the homeowners reported missing.
A nearby resident, also on Walnut Street, reported a person they identified as Fuller came to their door earlier and asked a child in the home if any adults were around. At that point, the resident said he heard this exchange and approached Fuller who claimed he was lost and looking for directions.
Sgt. Michael Miehle said he could not speculate as to Fuller’s reasons for arming himself with the wide range of tools, though he said no charges are coming forward at this time regarding the items as weaponry.
“Carrying (those tools) in a bag,” he said, referencing particularly the machete and hatchet, “doesn’t make it a weapon.”
©2012 the Foster’s Daily Democrat (Dover, N.H.)
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