EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

New Hampshire

January 31, 2014

Flag box theft suspect pleads not guilty

DERRY — A 42-year-old local man pleaded not guilty yesterday to stealing a flag collection box from the town transfer station.

Eric Lecuyer of 17L Gamache Road was arraigned on a misdemeanor theft charge by Judge Lucinda Sadler in 10th Circuit Court.

He is charged with taking the steel box, refurbished by Pinkerton Academy JROTC students, from the transfer station Nov. 29. The theft was recorded by a surveillance camera and the damaged box recovered at Lecuyer’s home Dec. 9.

Lecuyer was arrested at his home Jan. 14, police said.

The students installed the box — used for disposal of old flags — at the transfer station only a week before the theft.

Photographs of the box were presented to the judge yesterday. Lecuyer has been free on $1,000 personal recognizance and is scheduled to return to court April. 10. A trial date has not been set. He faces up to a year in jail if convicted.

His criminal record includes a theft conviction in 1994, a child pornography conviction in 2003 and a simple assault conviction in March 2013, according to New Hampshire State Police. He is a registered sex offender.

Lt. Col. Howie Steadman, the JROTC program adviser, has said the damaged box would be repainted and returned to the transfer station once the police investigation is complete.

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