One year dealt for theft of Lusby state park do­na­tions

Pair used claws to take money from fee box

The Calvert Recorder - - News - By CEDRICK HAWKINS Spe­cial to the Recorder

A Lusby man was sen­tenced Fri­day to an ad­di­tional year of jail time af­ter plead­ing guilty to steal­ing funds from the do­na­tion box at Calvert Cliffs State Park last Novem­ber.

Derek Craig Bradley, 30, en­tered the guilty plea to fourth-de­gree bur­glary, theft scheme and forgery. He was sen- tenced to one year, which will be added on to the 18 months he is serv­ing now for a vi­o­la­tion of pro­ba­tion, and is re­quired to pay back $60 stolen from the do­na­tion box.

Although he does not have to serve pro­ba­tion for this case, he does have to re­main on pro­ba­tion for a pre­vi­ous case in which he was in­volved.

His co-de­fen­dant, Jes­sica Rose Phelps, 29, had pre­vi­ously pleaded guilty to fourth-de­gree bur­glary charges this past Au­gust.

Ac­cord­ing to a po­lice re­port, the sher­iff’s of­fice was no­ti­fied of the al­leged theft Nov. 21, 2017, by the park’s vol­un­teer pres­i­dent, Charles Grubby, who said he saw some­one driv­ing a white Chrysler Town and Coun­try and steal­ing money out of the do­na­tion box.

The box, lo­cated on a pole near the en­trance booth to the state park, is used by pa­trons of the park to pay an en­trance fee. The box is locked and has a small slot on the front where pa­trons insert their money.

Af­ter de­tain­ing Bradley and Phelps at the north park­ing lot near the main­te­nance shed, po­lice re­port­edly found a bot­tle cap and a metal eat­ing uten­sil — items po­lice said are of­ten used for drug in­jec­tion prepa­ra­tion — in the car.

Two metal snakes with move­able claws on the end were also re­port­edly found in­side the ve­hi­cle, which Calvert deputies be­lieved could ex­plain the metal sound a park vol­un­teer re­port­edly heard and would make it pos­si­ble to pull money out of the do­na­tion box through the small slot.

While sit­ting in the pa­trol ve­hi­cle, Bradley ad­mit­ted he took money out of the box “a few times.” When asked how many times, he an­swered four or five. He con­fessed to us­ing the metal grab­bers to take money from the box and said the most he had ever taken from the box was $27, ac­cord­ing to po­lice.

Af­ter re­view­ing the surveil­lance tape the next day, Dfc. Tim­o­thy Mohler said the footage showed the Chrysler pulling in front of the do­na­tion box for lengthy pe­ri­ods of time Nov. 10, 13, 16 and 17. Mohler wrote in the charg­ing doc­u­ments that it is un­com­mon for some­one to stay at the do­na­tion box for longer than 15 to 45 sec­onds. In each in­stance, how­ever, the van was stopped for at least five min­utes in front of the do­na­tion box, the doc­u­ments state.

Ac­cord­ing to park per­son­nel, the box is emp­tied about once a month. When emp­tied, it of­ten has more than $400 in it.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.