Man arrested on many counts

By SHERYL SHAPIRO
THE JOURNAL NEWS
(Original publication: July 16, 2002)

A Kent man who was on probation will appear in Town Court today after being charged with a number of felonies and misdemeanors.

Thomas O'Rourke, 20, of Clarkson Road, was charged with 11 felony counts of fourth-degree criminal possession of stolen property and three misdemeanors, including seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, police said. O'Rourke was arrested Friday after Putnam probation officers and Kent police officers found a plastic bag containing a white powdery substance believed to be cocaine and another plastic bag containing several credit cards and photo IDs in his home, police said.

O'Rourke was on probation for a prior conviction. Because he was granted youthful offender status in that case, police would not release details of the earlier criminal offense. Police said probation officers Karen Birch and John Osterhout were performing a routine search of O'Rourke's home when they found the plastic bags and a camera believed to be stolen property. Kent Police Officer Joseph Peters, who had accompanied the probation officers as part of a new pilot program, was consulted and immediately recognized the credit cards and IDs as items reported stolen from two vehicles following the July 4 fireworks display over Lake Carmel.

"Peters had investigated one of the vehicle larcenies and was familiar with the complaints and the area where the larcenies had occurred," said Kent Police Sgt. Carlton Champagne.

Items valued at $10,000 - including a diamond ring, a watch, earrings, cash, credit cards and a cell phone - were taken from one car. A video camera, a 35mm camera and cash valued at $1,780 were taken from a second car. Both vehicles were parked on Clarkson Road. O'Rourke was released without bail pending today's noon court appearance.



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