State looks to see if suspect brought stolen vehicle to court

Man arrested after stolen truck is recovered

By Stephen Betts | Apr 26, 2019
Photo by: Knox County Jail Damon Rice

Rockland — A 56-year-old South Thomaston man was arrested Thursday, April 25, after police say he was driving a pickup truck stolen five days earlier from outside a Rockland restaurant.

And the District Attorney's Office is investigating whether the suspect brought the stolen vehicle to court earlier in the day when he appeared for a hearing on unrelated charges.

Damon Rice was arrested and charged with unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, operating a motor vehicle while license suspended, and violating of conditions of release, according to the Knox County Sheriff's Office.

The truck had been parked at the Landings Restaurant the previous Saturday morning, when its owner had gone inside for a few minutes. The vehicle was stolen while the owner was inside.

According to police, a citizen spotted the vehicle about 2 p.m. Thursday being driven on Ingraham Drive in Owls Head by an unknown man. Deputies responded to the area and located the vehicle on Dublin Road.

A witness who was doing yard work saw deputies and advised them that the operator of the truck pulled into the driveway and walked away. Deputies searched the area and found the man walking on Buttermilk Lane in South Thomaston. Deputies made contact with the man and after an interview, arrested Rice.

The Rockland Police Department was advised of the recovery and took possession of the vehicle.

Rice was in court earlier Thursday on unrelated charges of unauthorized use of a vehicle and possession of a firearm by a prohibited person. He pleaded guilty, but the judge agreed to delay the start of Rice's jail sentence until May 3.

Surveillance video from the courthouse parking lot will be obtained to determine whether he brought the vehicle to court.

He was back in court Friday, where he pleaded not guilty to the new charges. Judge Paul Mathews agreed to revoke his stay of the jail term imposed Thursday, and Rice was taken back to the Knox County Jail.

Comments (1)
Posted by: Mary A McKeever | Apr 26, 2019 15:45

Why not just lock him up as a perpetual offender and be done with it?

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