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Waltham police say plumber stole dead police captain's gun, badge

Posted by Jaclyn Reiss  October 3, 2013 01:46 PM

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A plumber allegedly stole a dead Waltham police captain's gun and police badge while working on the house belonging to the captain's son, police said.

Connor Burke, 19, of Dedham was working on renovations for the son's Waltham house on Sept. 26 when he allegedly went snooping through the home and stole the gun, badge, and various jewelry, said Waltham Police Det. Sgt. Joseph Guigno.

Burke allegedly took the gun - a Colt Python .357 Magnum caliber revolver, which Captain John Benson received as a gift from the police department for being on the force 25 years - and the police wallet badge to sell, Guigno said.

"I think it was a spur of the moment thing," Guigno said. "I think he just needed money."

Benson, who died in October 2010 at the age of 83, started working with the Waltham Police Department in 1953, after serving in World War II, according to his obituary.

"These were things that had sentimental value - the son was just upset that his father’s stuff was taken," Guigno said.

While investigating the incident, police called the plumbing company, whose owner talked to Burke and urged him to turn himself into police that same night. Burke returned all the items he had taken, Guigno said.

Police arrested Burke and charged him with larceny of a firearm, larceny from a building, and carrying a firearm without a license, Guigno said.

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Jaclyn Reiss can be reached at jaclyn.reiss@globe.com

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