A Casco man is facing charges after he allegedly stole a commercial vehicle that was carrying grave stones and cemetery monuments Saturday night from the Hall Funeral Home on Quaker Ridge Road in Casco.
The vehicle, which has a crane attached to it, is used to move cemetery markers, according to Naldo Gagnon, Chief Deputy for the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office. Hall Funeral Home, in a post on its Facebook page, said the truck contained gravestones and monuments.
“This truck was loaded and prepped to deliver family stones and monuments so those have all been stolen as well. We are heartsick and heartbroken,” Hall Funeral Home wrote on Facebook, prior to the vehicle being found.
In a news release issued Sunday, the Sheriff’s Office identified the suspect as Steven Locke, 32, of Casco. Locke has been charged with felony unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, violating his conditions of release, and operating with a suspended driver’s license. At the time of his arrest, Locke had 10 outstanding arrest warrants stemming from prior incidents with police as well as 10 sets of pre-conviction bail conditions.
Deputies from the Sheriff’s Office responded around 9:53 a.m. Sunday to a report of a vehicle that had apparently been stolen from the funeral home. Deputies were informed that the vehicle was taken in the last 12 hours.
At 12:24 p.m. Sunday, a citizen, who was familiar with the stolen commercial vehicle, contacted authorities about an unknown male operating the vehicle on Roosevelt Trail – also known as Route 302 – in Casco. The tipster gave police a “clear direction of travel” that allowed deputies to locate the stolen vehicle on Heritage Hill Road in Naples.
The Sheriff’s Office said Locke was arrested without incident and transported to the Cumberland County Jail in Portland where he was being held Sunday night on $10,000 bail for the outstanding warrants and without bail on the felony theft charges. There was no reason given by the Sheriff’s Office for why Locke stole the funeral home vehicle.
Hall Funeral Home thanked the Casco community with assisting police in locating the stolen truck and its contents.
“We cannot thank you all, our community, family, neighbors and friends for their support. With the help of the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Department, who immediately jumped into action this morning and a gentleman who thought he saw the truck and called the police, everything has been found safely with no damage to anything at all,” Hall Funeral Home said in a statement. “Thank you is not enough. We are so grateful to our neighbors and friends, out entire community for helping find the individual and assisting in getting our property returned.”