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Nearly $30K in copper, tools stolen from Portland homeless shelter worksite

Edward Demers, 42, and Chayne Markie, 23, are accused of stealing more than $20,000 in copper and about $8,500 in battery-powered tools.

PORTLAND, Maine — Two men from Portland have been charged in connection with a burglary at the construction site of the city's new Homeless Services Center on Monday night.

The Homeless Services Center is under construction at 654 Riverside St. A groundbreaking event was held March 29, 2022, and construction was expected to take about a year, according to the city's website.

Edward Demers, 42, and Chayne Markie, 23, have been accused of stealing more than $20,000 in copper and about $8,500 in battery-powered tools from the construction site, according to a release Tuesday from Portland police.

Both men were charged with burglary, felony theft, criminal mischief, and refusal to submit to arrest. Markie was also charged with violation of conditions of release. Both were taken to the Cumberland County Jail, officials said.

Police said a witness notified them he had seen two people exiting the construction site just after 11 p.m. Monday. When officers arrived at the scene, they heard noises coming from nearby trails and located Demers and Markie pushing wheelbarrows loaded with copper, Tuesday's release stated.

RELATED: Portland breaks ground for new Homeless Services Center in Riverton neighborhood

A short time later, an officer checking nearby businesses located a pickup truck belonging to Markie in the parking lot of Waste Management, police said. The bed of the pickup contained several battery-powered tools, and it was determined that the tools belonged to a company working at the construction site, according to police.

The investigation into the burglary is ongoing. 

Portland police ask anyone who may have information to call them at 207-874-8575.

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