BOSTON (CBS) – A man and woman charged with burglarizing the home of a Vietnam veteran while he was fighting for his life in the hospital claimed they needed money so one of their dogs could have surgery.
Police said 35-year-old Joseph Migliaccio, of Woonsocket, R.I. and 31-year-old Sarah Hampton, of Sudbury, burglarized the home three times over the weekend. They broke into the house in broad daylight, authorities say, while the veteran, Gene Rano, is fighting for his life in the hospital.
Rano sustained serious burns in a brush fire earlier this month. He is currently in a coma.
In court on Thursday, prosecutors said Migliaccio admitted he picked the lock once to get in and broke through the door another time. Hampton and Migliaccio returned some of the stolen items to police while others were recovered from a Framingham pawn shop.
"I asked where he got his stuff," said Roman Vynnytskyi, the owner of Golden Circle pawn shop. "They said, 'We had it in the shed,' and he mentioned that his father passed away and he's selling his stuff."
The store has security video of the couple walking in with all the allegedly stolen items, and going through them at the register.
The store also has individual pictures of everything they sold. Items included a rare coin collection, a flat-screen television, and various pieces of home maintenance equipment.
Following their appearance, the pair walked out of court. The judge set bail at the same amount as what they posted Wednesday night.
Neither suspect nor their attorney commented while leaving court.
Nick Rano, the veteran's son, said the suspects knew his father. He believes they may have targeted the home because they knew Gene Rano was in the hospital.
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