Arts / Sep. 23, 2010 3:48pm EDT

By Cornelia Cesari

The State Police investigation into the multiple burglaries in the Randolph area has yielded its first arrest.

Chase C. Locke, 21, of Randolph was arrested by police at 6 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 9 and is implicated in three of the burglaries.

The burglaries, which typically involve daytime entry and the theft of money—from cans of change up to $3000 in some cases—have unnerved residents of the Randolph area, who are locking their doors as never before..

One new case was informally reported on Braintree Hill just this week.

Locke was in Orange County District Court in Chelsea yesterday, (Wednesday) charged with two felony counts of burglary, a felony charge of grand larceny, and two misdemeanors: petit larceny and buying, receiving, selling, possessing or concealing stolen property.

Police said the charges stem from events allegedly occurring Aug. 30, Sept. 7 and Sept. 14.

The affidavit filed with the court indicates that Lock is specifically charged with burglarizing the homes of Pauline Poulin on Thayer Brook Road in Braintree on Aug. 31 and also the home of Duane “Skip” Tabor of the East Bethel Road—while he was out in the fields working.

He’s also charged with selling a crossbow to Kolbey Haupt. The crossbow had been stolen from Aaron Messier, the police affidavit said.

Chase pleaded innocent to all five counts.

According to an affidavit filed by Senior Trooper Mark Harvey of the VSP, Locke’s arrest was the result of an investigation involving several burglaries which primarily netted large amounts of change. Locke was subsequently videotaped processsing almost $1000 worth of change at the coin star machine at Shaw’s.

Witnesses also tied Locke to illegal prescription drugs and the alleged sale of a stolen crossbow.

According to the affidavit filed by police with the court, Locke explained that “about a year ago he got involved with some drug activity—that he had some kids that owed him a bunch of money” and that they paid him with buckets of change.

Revising that story later, he admitted to “going into” three houses and taking change. He maintained, however, that someone else may be responsible for the other area burglaries, perhaps someone who has been repaying debts to Chase in change.

Locke was held at the Southeast Correctional Center after his arrest Monday. Judge Harold E. Eaton, Jr. allowed attorney Kelly Green to represent Locke at the Sept. 22 arraignment, but emphasized that he would need to retain counsel immediately, as he does not qualify for the services of a public defender.

The Court granted Green’s request that the bail of $2500 be concurrent to Locke’s bail for violation of probation. Atty. Green advised that he may be eligible for a home detention program.

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