By Alexandra Quilici
Thursday afternoon brought forth two witnesses against a man accused of burglary and vehicle theft. Judge Daniel P. Maguire ruled there to be reasonable suspicion on both counts against Ronald Perrigo.
The first witness brought forth was the victim in the case. She knew the defendant’s uncle and was friends with him for 20-plus years. At the time of the incident, she was not living at her home because police officers had ruled it unlivable due to its cluttered condition.
Still, she came to her house every day for four to five hours of cleaning up. The judge ruled that she was making an honest attempt at trying to move back into her house. The witness professed that her husband of over 20 years had died a few years back, and the house was the collection of all these items.
However, the woman got into a terrible accident during this time, halting her progress to clean her house. She suffered spinal damage and memory loss in some aspects of her life. Her priority became her health and not her house.
Despite the witness facing financial troubles, she refused (and still does) to sell her 1957 Thunderbird car – her and her deceased husband’s “baby” as she called it. She valued the car at around $45,000 dollars but was adamant she would never sell it.
On the day of the crime, the victim’s neighbor came yelling that someone was stealing her car. When she got there, it was in the middle of the street and a man was running away.
She never had the discussion with the defendant that she wanted the car moved, never expressed that she wanted anyone to touch it or to buy it. She barely had seen or talked to the defendant besides a few pleasantries here and there.
The next witness was police officer Erik Thruelsen. He received the phone call about the incident. The defendant said he had purchased the car from the woman. He also verified that the witness’ house was not just “cluttered” but completely uninhabitable.
Judge Maguire plans move to forward with the case, finding reasonable suspicion on both counts.