Massachusetts man arrested in connection with Bennington burglaries

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BENNINGTON — A 28-year-old Massachusetts man who was arrested this week in connection with two burglaries back in June is being held on $15,000 bail.

Jordan R. McDonald, of Adams, is one of two men whom a Bennington resident's video security system caught taking items, Bennington Police said.

McDonald pleaded not guilty in Vermont Superior Court Bennington Criminal Division on Tuesday to felony burglary (two counts) and grand larceny greater than $900, and misdemeanor petit larceny $900 or less and vehicle operation without owner consent.

A Chapel Road resident called police the morning of June 11 after finding items had been taken from his garage, according to an affidavit by Bennington officer Clay W. Knight. Video taken by a security system shows two men making multiple trips in and out of the garage and loading items into a red car. The resident told police that a "chop saw" valued at about $1,000 and $300 worth of copper were taken. The resident later found a car matching the description of the one involved in the burglary on Depot Street with his property inside.

Police later spoke with the car's owner, a 21-year-old Bennington woman. Police learned that McDonald and another man, Cameron Morris, 20, had stayed over the woman's house the night of June 10. Among several "weird" questions they allegedly asked her was concerning locations of local scrap yards, according to the affidavit. The next morning, the woman found her car full of tools and scrap metal, and both men left her residence after she declined to drive them to Massachusetts.

Police matched the description of what the men were wearing on the security footage to what the woman reported McDonald and Cameron when she saw them, according to the affidavit.

Bennington police investigated another burglary on June 11: A woman reported her shed was broken into and that carpentry tools and accessories were stolen. According to the affidavit, those tools and accessories, along with the items taken from Chapel Road, were found in the red car.

An arrest warrant for Cameron was issued in July, according to court records.

McDonald does not have a criminal history in Vermont, but does in Massachusetts, including a charge of assault with a weapon in 2015, and multiple counts of breaking and entering and larceny.

Judge David A. Howard ordered McDonald held at $15,000 bail at his arraignment. As of Wednesday evening, McDonald was still listed as detained at Marble Valley Regional Correctional Facility, Rutland.

Reach staff writer Edward Damon at 802-447-7567, ext. 111 or @edamon_banner.

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