Tim Leeds Havre Daily News firstname.lastname@example.org
Harold Watson, 19, has been charged in state District Court with six felony counts of burglary and three misdemeanor counts of theft. The charges allege that he unlawfully entered several residences in the Eagles Manor retirement home, stealing from residents' rooms, in some cases while the senior citizen was asleep. If convicted of the charges filed by the Hill County Attorney's Office Thursday, Watson faces up to 20 years in prison on each of the burglary charges and up to six months in prison on each of the theft charges. Watson is the grandson of Donna Meyers, aka Donna LaMere, a resident of the retirement home. Meyers was arrested this week for violation of her probation on a sentence of theft, unrelated to the incidents at Eagles Manor. Walt Ball, administrator of Eagles Manor, said resolution of the crime went as well as it could when something goes wrong. All of the burglaries apparently took place on Dec. 6, he said. "The police got here right away and got him," he said. "They have been very cooperative and have been doing an excellent job, I think, with this particular incident." According to a court document, police were called to Eagles Manor on Dec. 6. After a resident saw a man in his room taking pills out of medication bottles. After the man yelled at the intruder, the intruder left. The resident found several items missing from his residence. As the police investigated the scene, another resident said she had seen the suspect in her room that morning. While talking to the tenants, the Havre officers were notified that the suspect had entered the Eagles Manor, then that he had left and was walking down the street. Officers apprehended Watson, who first gave a false identification, the court document says. Watson, who was complaining of having an anxiety attack, was taken to a local hospital while the investigation continued. Several other residents of Eagles Manor said they saw Watson in their rooms that night, and said they had found items missing, as well. Ball said the incident is an isolated event. The last time the Manor had problems with theft, some two to three years ago, several security cameras were installed to record incidents. "I think they are a pretty good deterrent," Ball said. He added that the property taken from the rooms has been returned. "They (Havre police) recovered everything he took," Ball said.