Great Barrington man charged with breaking into several homes


PITTSFIELD >> A Great Barrington man is facing charges in connection with a string of thefts from several homes in businesses in South Berkshire.

John L. Hobart, 32, of Main Street, Housatonic, was arrested Tuesday after police executed a search warrant at his residence and seized evidence in the case, including several firearms, according to Great Barrington police.

Hobart, who had been the subject of a lengthy investigation, admitted he was involved in some of the thefts of jewelry, hand tools, power equipment and other items from three houses, a church and one business in Housatonic, according to Great Barrington Police Chief William Walsh. Many of the stolen items were sold at pawn shops in Waterbury, Conn., Pittsfield and New York state.

He pleaded not guilty in Central Berkshire District Court on Wednesday to five counts of breaking and entering in the nighttime with the intent to commit a felony and six felony counts of larceny over $250. He was ordered held on $2,500 bail.

The case was continued to Southern Berkshire District Court, where Hobart will appear on Thursday.

Hobart faces additional charges in Stockbridge and Sheffield as the Great Barrington investigation uncovered his alleged involvement in the theft of cooper from the Stockbridge Library currently under renovation, according to police. He also allegedly broke into a home in Sheffield.

Walsh said Great Barrington police also will be bringing drug-related charges against Hobart later this week, who is currently on probation from the Holyoke courts.

"The case is part of an ongoing investigation into heroin and other narcotic investigations in town," Walsh said.

The investigation into the break-ins is ongoing and those with information about the thefts should contact the Great Barrington Police at 413-528-0306.

Contact Dick Lindsay at 413-496-6233.


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