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Carthage man held in Black River bank break-in

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BLACK RIVER — A Carthage man was charged Tuesday with breaking into the Community Bank branch on Route 3 after police allegedly found him hiding in a closet in the bank.

After he was apprehended, Michael A. Lowe, 31, of Jackson Road, was charged by the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department with third-degree burglary, fourth-degree grand larceny, fourth-degree criminal possession of stolen property, third-degree criminal mischief, second-degree criminal trespass and attempted petit larceny.

About 8 a.m. Tuesday, sheriff’s deputies and Black River police responded to a report of a burglary at the bank after an employee arrived to open the branch, Jefferson County Detective David J. Pustizzi Jr. said. When patrols got there, officers found the man inside.

Mr. Lowe allegedly entered the bank by breaking a window. While inside, he unsuccessfully tried to break into several safes and the bank vault, Detective Pustizzi said. Mr. Lowe also is accused of breaking several security cameras and causing other damage to the building’s interior.

Mr. Lowe, who was unarmed, was inside the bank for a couple of hours, the detective said. It’s not clear why he remained in the bank for so long.

“It’s odd because of the fact that somebody would be inside the bank for a couple of hours,” Detective Pustizzi said.

Mr. Lowe was taken to the Metro-Jefferson Public Safety Building, Watertown, for questioning.

The dollar amount of the damage in the bank was not clear Tuesday night.

The episode began about 5 a.m. when Mr. Lowe went to a town of Champion residence and asked for a ride, the detective said. When the unidentified occupant refused, Mr. Lowe allegedly stole a pickup truck from a different residence after finding the keys inside.

He was arraigned in Champion Town Court and taken to the Public Safety Building on $25,000 bail.

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