What began with a robbery attempt at an elderly Braintree couple’s home now has police looking into the possibility of a cross-country string of thefts by a North Carolina couple.
Police suspect that George DeMetro, 36, of Wilkesboro, N.C., and Dina M. Miller, 42, of Boone, N.C., traveled from Las Vegas to Braintree, manipulating their way into homes in order to steal from them.
The couple was arrested Thursday afternoon after a 75-year-old Braintree resident called police, saying the couple talked their way into her house, claiming to be checking electrical wires for the state.
Elizabeth Turley, of 7 Burton Rd., said she was speaking to DeMetro at her front door, when Miller approached and distracted her as DeMetro entered the house.
Turley's husband, James, called from inside the house, saying DeMetro was in their bedroom. DeMetro claimed to be checking the water and ran the faucet in the bathroom.
Soon after that, DeMetro and Miller fled from their house.
The victim phoned police and described the black pickup truck with a red cap on the back. When police located the truck on Granite Street near D’Angelo’s, they found what Braintree Deputy Police Chief Russell Jenkins called a “boatload of property.’’
According to police, the truck contained $60,000 in cash, jewelry, coin and baseball collections, and silver serving ware in the truck. Police now are trying to locate other victims.
Police also found Miller’s 9- and 10-year-old sons in the back seat. They were turned over to the Department of Children and Families when Miller was taken into custody.
Although nothing was allegedly stolen from the Braintree home, pawn shop receipts found in the car from in and out of the state have police believing that the couple had been breaking into homes for a living, Jenkins said.
“If you look at the plethora of evidence, it seems this had been going on for a long time,” Jenkins said at a press conference Friday.
According to Jenkins, thieves often use this ruse to get in and out of victims’ homes while the door is unlocked.
It wasn’t clear if the couple had targeted this residence because of the homeowners’ ages, Jenkins said, though it isn’t unusual for elderly residents to be targeted in these kinds of schemes.
The North Carolina couple was held overnight without bail. At their arraignment at Quincy District Court Friday morning, DeMetro was held on $60,000 cash bail, and Miller on $10,000 cash bail.
Jenkins said the children’s grandparents tried to pick up the two boys from DCF; however, they were not released into their custody.
According to Jenkins, the couple may be in the area because of DeMetro’s father, who is seeking treatment for a medical issue.
Both Miller and DeMetro have previous records, though they are not currently wanted in any other state, police said.