Andover Townsman, Andover, MA

November 29, 2012

Man arrested in Phillips building break

By Dustin Luca
Staff Writer

---- — ANDOVER — After being found inside the locked Shuman Admission Center at Phillips Academy, a man accused of breaking into the building said a school official who caught him in the building “scared the crap out of me.”

Darrin Oneil, 47, of 37 Elmira Ave. in Newburyport, was arrested Friday and charged with larceny over $250, malicious destruction of property over $250 and breaking and entering into a building during the daytime with intent to commit a felony.

He pleaded not guilty to all three charges at his arraignment Monday in Lawrence District Court. He’s being held on $2,500 cash bail.

On Friday at 2:13 p.m., police received a call from Phillips Academy Admissions Director William Leahy, who said he “heard crashing that sounded like it was coming from upstairs” in the Shuman Admissions Center, according to a police narrative written by Andover Police Officer Benjamin Ledwell.

After seeing a pane of glass knocked out of outside door to the building, Leahy was about to call security when he saw someone inside.

Accorsing to a police report, when the man saw Leahy, he said, “(Expletive removed), you scared the crap out of me!” The man then ran from the building and left in a vehicle registered to Oneil, Ledwell wrote.

An employee’s office was broken into in the building, and a laptop computer valued at over $250 was missing from the employee’s desk, according to court documents.

Police put a call out to surrounding towns and the Mass. State Police to keep an eye out for Oneil’s vehicle. North Andover police later found the car by Route 114 and Interstate 495 in Lawrence, at which point the vehicle fled onto I-495 northbound, according to police.

The car was stopped in Newburyport by state, Amesbury and Newburyport police. Oneil was arrested and brought back to Andover, where he was booked on the charges.

A pretrial conference has been scheduled for Dec. 20 at Lawrence District Court.