NEWPORT CITY – Three Newport men and an unnamed juvenile face multiple charges for allegedly stealing items from parked cars in Newport New Year’s Eve.
Dereck Collins (20), Robert Knox (21) and Glen Boule (19) entered not guilty pleas in Orleans County Court Tuesday. All three men face felony charges of grand larceny and of having stolen property. They also face multiple misdemeanor charges.
Judge Robert Bent held Boule on $5,000 bail Tuesday. Bent released Collins and Knox on conditions.
On Dec. 31, 2011, Newport City Police responded to Winter Street for a report of four young men, with flashlights, going through cars. When police arrived, the men took off towards Elm Street. Officers Charles Moulton and David Jacobs tried to find the men while Officer Joshua Lillis met with the complainant.
Moulton followed footprints through yards towards Elm Street and Indian Point Street. The footprints went through thick vegetation, including burdock plants.
Jacobs told Moulton that four men were running from him on Northern Avenue.
Officer Jacobs stopped Collins, who had wet shoes, wet pants covered in burdock plants and was out of breath. Collins told Officer Jacobs that Boule, Knox and a juvenile had been stealing items from vehicles. Moulton found the other suspects on Union Street. They all had wet shoes, wet pants, were fatigued and had burdock plants on their lower portion.
Boule told Officer Moulton that he and the juvenile met up with Collins and Knox earlier that night. Boule told police that Knox asked if they wanted to go “car hopping,” which means stealing items from vehicles. Boule said that he and the juvenile went along with Collins and Knox. Boule denied running from police, but said he didn’t want to get into trouble because he had just gotten out of jail. Boule said he believed the others still had stolen property with them.
While sitting in the cruiser, a large amount of change spilled out of Boule’s pocket. He said the money was his and he asked Moulton to grab it so it wouldn’t spill.
At the police station, Boule said that he and the juvenile were walking on the Bluff Road when Collins and Knox approached them. Boule said Collins and Knox were doing things and he didn't want to be involved. Boule said that he and the juvenile walked with Collins and Knox, who were getting into vehicles. On Winter Street, Boule said that he and juvenile left the others who caught up later.
Collins gave a different story. He said he was with Knox when Boule and the juvenile showed up and Boule had a bottle of alcohol and asked if they wanted to walk around. Collins said Boule is the one who asked if they wanted to go car hopping. Collins said everyone but him said yes and that he just walked around with the others.
Collins said he and the juvenile watched while Boule and Knox went through vehicles. They started on Willey Street and ended up at CRMI’s parking lot on Lakemont Road. They eventually ended up on Northern Avenue.
Collins agreed to show police the cars they had entered.
On a different day, Collins told police Knox ditched a car stereo in the woods by Young and Union Streets. Collins also said that Boule and Knox went into the locked yard at Newport Auto Works on Union Street, but he didn’t know if they took anything.
Knox’s story was similar to the one Collins gave. He said that Boule showed up with a bottle of alcohol and asked if they “wanted to get money tonight.” Knox said it was hard for him to say no, because he had been drinking. The others asked him to be the lookout because he was wearing camouflage clothing. Knox said he was “wicked drunk” but believes Boule gave him a radio to use in his warning. He said the other three went through cars and handed him items to put in his pockets. Knox said didn’t know what was taken from the cars on Lakemont Street because he was hiding in the bushes and wasn’t handed anything.
The juvenile gave a similar account but added that Boule supplied him with alcohol.