PLAINVILLE - A local man is trying to pay restitution after allegedly damaging a seismograph machine at Tilcon.
Michael Gallant, 26, of 191 Westwood Ave., was informed by a judge during a hearing Thursday in Bristol Superior Court that any disposition to his case would need to include making restitution. He has been charged with first-degree criminal mischief and third-degree criminal trespassing.
According to the arrest warrant, representatives from Tilcon, at 395 Woodford Ave., contacted police on June 13 after discovering that a seismograph machine - worth $3,600 - was missing from a solar panel housing unit, which was damaged. The machine is used by a company contracted by Tilcon to measure sound waves and vibrations when there is blasting going on at the site.
According to the warrant, police used video surveillance from multiple trails on the Tilcon site to determine that a suspect driving an ATV broke into the solar panel housing unit and drove away with the seismograph. During the investigation, an officer identified the suspect as Gallant, the warrant continued.
When police spoke to Gallant, according to the warrant, he admitted that he regularly drives an ATV on the Tilcon property. He also said that, on one occasion, he broke into a small housing unit and took a machine. According to the warrant, Gallant said he did it out of anger and dumped the seismograph into some nearby bushes. The machine was later recovered and was heavily damaged.
In court on Thursday, a judge and a prosecutor told Gallant he may be eligible for a first-time offender program that could spare him prosecution. Judge John Cronan though, told him that restitution would need to be a part of any disposition to the case.
Gallant’s case was continued to Dec. 7 to give him time to save some money.
Justin Muszynski can be reached at 860-973-1809 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.