Guilty plea in glassware theft

A New Matamoras man who stole from a Grandview Township home where his mother was housesitting pleaded guilty Tuesday in Washington County Common Pleas Court to burglary.

Daren “Freddy” Moore, 34, pleaded guilty to a third-degree felony count of burglary for entering the home – a vacation property for a Pennsylvania couple – in November 2011 and stealing thousands of dollars worth of collectible glassware.

As part of the plea agreement, other charges against Moore and a complicity charge against his mother, 55-year-old Pamela Moore, were to be dropped, said Washington County Prosecutor Jim Schneider.

Pamela, who had a key to the home, was initially indicted for a fourth-degree felony count of complicity to theft for allowing Daren to access the home. However, Schneider said Tuesday that Daren’s mother did not knowingly facilitate the crime.

“There was no sign of forced entry. We believe he used a key…certainly without the permission of his mother and without the permission of the (property owners),” he said.

At the time of the burglary, the property owners were employing Pamela Moore to look after the house and a groundskeeper to tend to the outside, said Schneider.

“The groundskeeper had observed Mr. Moore at the property without his mother and wondered why he was there,” said Schneider.

Daren admitted Tuesday in his plea that he had stolen a multitude of glass pieces from the home. One of the homeowners had amassed the glassware when her family’s glass business – a Sistersville, W.Va. outfit similar to Fenton Art Glass – had gone out of business, said Schneider.

As it started investigating the crime, the Washington County Sheriff’s Office learned that Daren had been selling glassware to New Matamoras residents and in local shops, including an antique store in Marietta, said Schneider.

Washington County Common Pleas Court Judge Ed Lane accepted Moore’s guilty plea and continued his bond. Lane questioned whether drugs or alcohol were a factor and if Moore therefore needed to be evaluated for drug and alcohol counseling.

His attorney, Nancy Brum, advised that her client had only used marijuana before.

“I suppose the court might want that,” she said in reference to a counseling evaluation.

Lane ordered the evaluation and set sentencing for 8 a.m. Aug. 26.