ELLSWORTH —– A construction worker accused of stealing tens of thousands of dollars worth of silver, gold and jewelry from a Mount Desert resident was indicted last week by a Hancock County grand jury.
David Hickman, 30, of Hancock was indicted Oct. 9 on single counts of class B theft and violating conditions of release.
According to Assistant District Attorney Mary Kellett, Hickman was painting and doing repair work at a home in the village of Somesville when he allegedly stole silverware, jewelry and gold.
“He’s admitted to stealing most but not all of the items,” Kellett said.
Kellett said the victim sets the value of the missing items at $36,440.
The thefts were discovered at Christmastime when the homeowner went to get out the silverware for a holiday dinner. She then looked around the home, found other items missing and called police, Kellett said.
Officer Ken Mitchell of the Mount Desert Police Department began an investigation which led him to a pawn shop in Machias, where the officer learned Hickman had been selling silver and other items. Among the other items was a unique diamond and ruby brooch the pawn shop sold through the auction website e-Bay. The victim was able to identify the brooch through a photo posted on the website, Kellett said.
When confronted by police, Hickman returned several items that he had taken. Most, however, were never recovered, Kellett said.
Prosecutors believe the items were taken between Nov. 1 and Dec. 26 of last year.
Kellett said Hickman claims the value of the items he stole was more like $18,000. Legally, there is little difference between that amount and the $36,440. Thefts of $10,000 and more are class B crimes, punishable by up to ten years in prison.
Hickman was not indicted on a burglary charge because, as a construction worker, he had access to the home, and therefore had permission to enter, Kellett said.
Hickman’s indictment for violating the conditions of release stems from the fact he was on bail after being arrested on a charge of operating after license revocation, Kellett said.