A North Carolina man has been arrested after selling more than $50,000 worth of jewelry he stole while working as a carpenter in a Mattituck home, Southold Town police said.
Harold D. Varnot, 56, of Clayton, North Carolina, was charged with third-degree criminal possession of stolen property.
Police said Varnot stole the jewelry in November and then sold it at pawnshops in Shirley and Patchogue.
“He had done odd jobs around the house over several years,” Det. Edward Grathwohl explained in a telephone interview Thursday. Grathwohl said the homeowner called police to report the jewelry missing.
Grathwohl said the “assorted” jewelry taken during Varnot’s time working at the home included rings, necklaces and pendants.
Police said Varnot was connected to the stolen jewelry by searching through the names of people who had sold jewelry to area pawnshops, and authorities received a tip about where to locate the suspect.
“He was found in Cutchogue on the street — in a vehicle,” Grathwohl said. The detective added that Varnot was arrested on Nov. 18 and arraigned the next day.
Grathwohl said that after his arraignment Varnot was being held in the Suffolk County jail in lieu of a $10,000 cash bail or $20,000 bond.