HAVERHILL — What started out as a relatively routine drug bust helped officers solve a house break, police said.
They said the evidence was in plain sight — a stolen computer sitting in the back seat of a car as a husband and wife were using heroin in the vehicle.
The husband and wife were shooting up heroin in the parking lot of the CVS on River Street Tuesday afternoon, police said, and ended up being charged with breaking into a home on Millvale Road.
Keith Thompson, 42, and Heather Thompson, 29, both of 418 East Broadway, were arrested and charged with possession of a Class A drug, breaking and entering in the daytime, and larceny over $250.
A friend of the owner of 62 Millvale Road happened to be driving by the house and noticed a broken side window at about 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, said Deputy Chief Donald Thompson. The friend immediately called police, Thompson said.
Officers went to the scene and searched the neighborhood for suspects, police said.
Pamela Boddy, the homeowner, also went to the house and identified missing items, including a computer and jewelry, according to a report filed by Detective Meaghan Buckley.
Detectives also saw a trail of drops of blood leading from near the broken window up to the second floor, Buckley wrote.
Later, Buckley and Detective Sonny Greenwood were looking for drug-related activity near Exit 49 off Interstate 495, Thompson said. Shortly after the break-in on Millvale Road was reported, they saw a Ford Explorer pull into the parking lot at CVS, Thompson said.
The man and woman inside the Explorer stayed in the car and were both hunched over, a common position for people injecting themselves with heroin, according to Buckley's report.
Buckley and Greenwood approached the vehicle and identified themselves as police officers. Heather Thompson pulled a needle from her arm and blood began to drip from the injection site, according to Buckley's report.
Greenwood and Buckley noticed a laceration on Keith Thompson's right wrist, police said. The detectives also saw a computer inside the car that matched the description of the one stolen from the Millvale Road home, Thompson said.
As soon as Capt. Alan Ratte and other detectives at that location learned what had been stolen, they passed the information on to their colleagues, Thompson said.
Police brought the Ford Explorer to the station, obtained a search warrant and found jewelry in the vehicle, Thompson said. He added that the investigation is continuing.
The items stolen from 62 Millvale Road were returned to their owner, Thompson said. They included: An Apple computer valued at $3,000; a cable box for an Apple computer worth $600; an external drive priced at $500; and a silver charm bracelet with a value of $500, according to Buckley's report.
Judge Michael Uhlarik set $10,000 cash bail on Keith Thompson and $5,000 on Heather Thompson in Haverhill District Court yesterday. The judge scheduled a pretrial conference for Sept. 1.
The Thompsons are employed as painters, according to the arrest record. Keith Thompson was taken to Middleton jail while Heather Thompson was sent to MCI-Framingham after their arraignment.
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