The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA


September 21, 2012

Copper caper costly

Milton suspect gets charged with 52 counts

LEWISBURG — Nine separate cases have a Milton man facing 52 charges for his alleged role in a rash of copper thefts in Lewisburg borough in late July.

Nicholas A. Norman, 34 of 183 Beech Circle in Milton, was arraigned Friday before Magisterial District Judge Leo Armbruster and taken to Union County Prison.

Bail in each case was set at $5,000.

Norman has been charged with nine counts each of burglary, conspiracy and criminal trespass, all felonies. He also faces nine counts of criminal mischief and eight counts each of theft by unlawful taking and receiving stolen property, all misdemeanors.

All told, Norman is facing 52 charges, 27 of them felonies.

Norman is the second person charged in the spree of 13 burglaries in Lewisburg reported between July 23 and 29 in a four-block radius of South Sixth and South Seventh streets. The homes primarily are rented to Bucknell University students.

On July 30, Dennis Russell, 41 of Milton, was charged in Union County with burglary and conspiracy, both felonies. Later that day, in Northumberland County, Russell was arraigned in a case at 608 Lincoln St. in Milton on charges of burglary and criminal trespass, both felonies, and possession of an instrument of crime, a misdemeanor.

It was during the investigation of that Milton burglary and copper theft, where Russell was apprehended, that he told police he did the burglaries with Norman, who would call Russell to help him and then gave Russell $150 for his work.

According to affidavits, Russell admitted he took part in six burglaries in Lewisburg that he did with Norman. Russell said he took part in the thefts to support his heroin habit.

Some witnesses in Lewisburg told police they saw a white van at some scenes and two men carrying cut copper pipe. In one case, the two men realized they were spotted and ran from the scene, according to a criminal affidavit.

In their investigation, Buffalo Valley Regional Police inquired with Staimans Recycling Corp. in Williamsport about the white van and any related customers. The business had reported seeing the van during the period of the thefts, and a plate number traced the registration of a white 1998 Windstar van to Dawn Hadcock of 183 Beech Circle in Milton. The driver’s license presented to Staimans was that of Norman of the same address.

Norman already was in Northumberland County Prison, in lieu of $25,000 bail, charged for his role in the Milton break-in with burglary, conspiracy to commit burglary, criminal trespass, risking catastrophe, criminal mischief, receiving stolen property and theft.

According to the affidavits, on August 31, Norman confessed to Buffalo Valley Regional Police his involvement with Russell in the Lewisburg thefts.

He admitted to entering 137-139 S. Sixth St.; 601-603 Saint Catherine St.; and 100, 111, and 116 S. Seventh St.


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