Chocolate theft gets solved

Oak Bluffs Police track down thief and recover money, chocolate, and jewelry.

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New Moon Magick, a chocolate and antique store, was robbed. — Brian Dowd

In the early morning hours of Saturday, Nov. 3, Kathleen Cowley heard rustling sounds coming from inside her chocolate and jewelry shop.

Cowley, owner of New Moon Magick Enchanted Chocolates, lives in a house that is parallel to her chocolate and vintage jewelry shop, overlooking Washington Park in Oak Bluffs. She was up early, getting ready to bring her homemade chocolates to the West Tisbury Farmers Market, when through her kitchen window she saw a man walking through her store. Cowley immediately called the police, but the intruder left by the time Officer Robert Mansfield arrived. He gave Cowley some safety tips, and said he would keep an eye on the store.

A few moments later, Officer Mansfield returned to Cowley’s shop, this time with $72 cash and a check made out to Enchanted Chocolates — all of which he found outside on the road.

With her money back, Cowley went about her morning prepping for the farmers market. An hour later, Cowley saw a car parked and running across from her driveway, and a man walking into the shop wearing a black hooded sweatshirt.

She took a photo of the car and called the police and told them, “He’s back.” The man quickly ran out of the shop and into the car before driving off.

Det. Jeffrey LaBell arrived at Cowley’s house to get the picture of the intruder’s getaway car. Oak Bluffs Police continued their investigation throughout the day by identifying the vehicle, having Cowley identify the intruder from a photo lineup, and determining the alleged intruder was Zac Dupon of Oak Bluffs.

Upon being questioned by police, Dupon “became remorseful” and told the officer he “wanted some of the chocolate that they sell in that store,” according to the police report. Dupon then handed over a large bag filled with chocolate, jewelry, and crystals — all merchandise from Cowley’s shop, the report states.

Dupon had helped Cowley sell chocolate at the farmer’s market a few years before. She said she intends to press charges. “I can’t have people invading my shop and my home,” Cowley told The Times.

Despite having her shop broken into twice in one morning, Cowley kept a positive attitude, and wanted people to know Enchanted Chocolates will continue to make chocolate — and if people want to try it, they should just ask.

“Just come in during business hours,” Cowley said, “We have people that like it so much they break in for it. They’ll do anything for our chocolate.”

Cowley praised the efforts of the Oak Bluffs Police Department for solving the case so quickly. “Many thanks to the OBPD for their dedication, spending the entire day solving the crime. We are grateful that they were also able to retrieve the stolen goods,” she wrote in a Facebook post.

“They did great work. My guys always do good work,” Lt. Williamson told The Times. “It was good police work.”

While happy the break-in was solved, Cowley said she felt her home and store were violated, and is installing cameras around the shop. “It was unsettling. We are making adjustments to prevent these things from happening,” Cowley said. “We’re working on our holiday treats. We’re getting ready for the holidays.”

Williamson said that Cowley was a huge help because she snapped a picture of the car. The photo didn’t have a picture of the license plate, but Lt. Williamson shared it with other Island police departments. West Tisbury Police Officer Nickolaj Wojtkielo identified the car as belonging to Dupon.

Dupont was not arrested because he was cooperative with police, admitted to breaking into the shop, and returned what he had taken, according to Lt. Williamson

Cowley has been cataloging the recovered merchandise, and said about $1,200 of jewelry and chocolate was allegedly stolen.

Dupon will be summoned to court on charges of for larceny from a building and larceny over $1,200, according to the police report.

 

12 COMMENTS

  1. It is very clear upon reading this article, that justice is not being served. The alleged perpetrator would more appropriately be deserving of a mutual agreement with the police. Under the terms of the proposed release agreement with the police, Mr. Dupon should be allowed to seek retirement, and should be compensated for $7,686 in accumulated vacation and $12,746 in compensatory time. He ought to be entitled to unemployment benefits, according to an agreement.

    “Mr. Dupon agrees to refrain from making any public statements including but not limited to social media postings of any kind (or authorizing any statements to be reported as being attributed to Mr. Dupon) that are critical, derogatory, or which may tend to injure the reputation of the town, the board of selectmen, town administrator, town labor counsel, police chief, or members of the police department,” the separation agreement should state.
    Any similarity to existing agreements with other privileged persons is purely coincidental. The basis for this fair proposal is the clear indication Mr. Dupon is a romantic at heart for wanting such delicious chocolate and jewelry. Perhaps for a lucky suitor?

    • Why is this comment here when all it does is belittle the commenter, not for what he said, but for the fact that he commented? I thought the Times was trying to raise that bar. Great chocolates, by the way, and sorry this happened. I am a huge fan of the salted dark chocolate covered almonds.

      • We are and I can see how you would see it as belittling, but I took it as tongue in cheek because James is a frequent commenter. Judging by his own comment, James did, too. And we do appreciate that most people have been mindful of efforts to raise the bar.

  2. Why thank you, BB! Very kind and generous of you to be concerned for my well being, but I do in fact have a very satisfying job already, being the wise sage of our nefarious law enforcement community on MV. Their degradation and descent into a joke of the sworn oath they pledged to uphold, is one I pledge to shine light on. About the only one I have respect for is Paul Condlin, former Edgartown Chief , who, though I disagree with at times, has had the courage to come here and tell it as he sees it. Paul does not defend the indefensible. But sadly, as the above article points out, Justice on MV has become an illusory construct.
    A man who invaded a property to steal chocolate and trinkets, faces charges. A drunk MV police chief invades a home at 3am without authorization, vomits everywhere, and is given a pleasant ride home. An OB Detective violates federal law in accessing that criminal database without authorization, and is given a fat goodbye check, with no apparent reporting to his other professional oversight board, the Bar Association of Massachusetts. Can you understand a little cynicism here? I just want for all Islanders the Justice given to it’s law enforcement community.

    • James, I understand. Most often you, as the “wise sage of our nefarious law enforcement community on MV”have the ability to call the state ethics commission concerning the OB detective, the Gay Head Chief and any other public official of which you feel the trust of the public has been violated. Sometimes beating a dead horse on the online comment section doesn’t help further your cause of Truth, Justice and the Vineyard way. Sometimes taking action to make sure that those sworn at state level to look into injustice do an impartial and legal job at it.

      https://www.mass.gov/orgs/state-ethics-commission

  3. Good old school Island policing. The officers had to work through few obstacles…put it together, did it well and got the job done. The person who called for their help was satisfied. The chief knows his officers were up to the challenge and the officers feel good about the work they did. Fun stuff. Whats wrong with that…

    • It helps that crimes of this type get sorted into the ‘Ill-thought and Idiotic’ file.
      Good job cops, bringing resolution to a hard-working local.
      And I’ll agree: Her chocolates are REALLY good!

  4. It is more than a little unusual my efforts to raise consciousness about systemic favortism, corruption and downright sleaziness with certain MV police forces gets framed as “beating a dead horse”. Then on top of that I somehow have the responsibility to report these nefarious actions to the state ethics commission. Hmmmm…. it would seem from where I sit the burden is upon law enforcement to act within their sworn oaths and the Constitution, not for me to stop addressing their actions which have eroded the public’s trust. Where are the ethics complaints to the commission by fellow officers who witness this corruption first hand? …. (crickets chirping). This shifting of burdens to me to stop beating this “dead horse” rather than them to stop being corrupt, is surprising.
    I have news for you, that “horse” isn’t dead.

  5. Once upon a time I attended a business meeting at the home of two elected Tisbury town officials. They served voluminous amounts of alcohol. Contrary to the state’s Social Host law, they allowed me to leave their home and enter my car to drive home. First offense. Next, driving home after the previous day’s snowstorm had turned to ice on the unplowed roads, my car hit a patch of ice. My car slid into a snowdrift. No speeding, no car accident, no property damage, but I sustained a concussion. A trooper called the EMTs, but when the Tisbury Police Department responded they dismissed the EMTs before they were allowed to perform a concussion protocol. Instead of being taken to MVH, I was taken to a holding cell at the Dukes County House of Correction. I could have died in that cell. Second offense. Great job, Tisbury Police Department! Keep up your surveillance, Mr. Kozak. Clearly neither our elected officials nor our police departments are working in the interests of the Island’s residents.

    • Wait, I can understand it’s not your point, but for your first offense at the business meeting with generous hosts, were you forced to drink to excess? If someone walked into your office at work and brought you s bottle of scotch for a Christmas gift, and you sat there and drank the whole thing, would you blame the gift giver if you got fired for being drunk on the job? Why do people who choose to get drunk, blame everyone but themselves for their bad choices?

      • What you say makes sense. Unfortunately in MA the blame is always on the host. There was a situation years ago here where uninvited guests to a party were tossed out, then had a car accident resulting in one death and a serious injury.(they did not even consumer alcohol at the party) The homeowner was sued by one of the drunks who was injured and got an insurance settlement since the insurance company knew that a jury would have given a larger award .That’s the way it is in Massachusetts unfortunately.

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