The woman accused of killing an 83-year-old woman in her Owls Head home last month was indicted Tuesday on charges of murder and theft.
Sarah Richards, 37, of South Thomaston has been held without bail since her arrest Feb. 22, a day after she allegedly killed Helen Carver, whom Richards had been shoveling snow for since December.
Carver, who lived alone, was found dead in her home Feb. 21. The state medical examiner’s office determined she died of blunt force trauma.
On Tuesday, a Knox County grand jury indicted Richards on a charge of murder and a charge of theft by unauthorized taking, for allegedly stealing property worth more than $1,000 from Carver.
Leading up to her death, Carver allegedly suspected that Richards had stolen her debit or credit card, according to Carver’s sons. They said their mother reported the alleged theft to the police.
The indictment did not specify what Richards allegedly stole from Carver, but stated the property consisted of money with a value of more than $1,000. According to the indictment, the alleged theft began Feb. 7 and continued through Feb. 21, the day Carver died.
Richards made her initial court appearance last week, when Superior Court Justice Bruce Mallonee ordered that she remain held without bail. Richards’ attorney Jeremy Pratt did not request a bail hearing.
Richards’ next scheduled court date is a status hearing May 23, according to a Knox County court clerk.
Mallonee was specially assigned to be the sole judge overseeing the case, according to an order filed Feb. 25. On March 1, Belfast attorney Logan E. Perkins joined Pratt as co-counsel for the defense.
Richards has a lengthy criminal history, consisting mostly of thefts and drug convictions. Most recently, Richards was convicted in 2015 of stealing and reselling lobster crates with her then-husband from the Fox Island Lobster Co. Richards was sentenced to serve 10 months at the Maine Correctional Center in Windham and pay $1,605 for her role in that crime, according to her criminal record.
If Richards is found guilty of murder, she faces a minimum sentence of 25 years in prison and a maximum sentence of life in prison.