ROCKLAND, Maine ― The Pennsylvania man who was found safe in Maine last week after days of being missing has been charged with breaking into a home, vandalizing it and stealing a kayak.
Thomas W. Hackett, 29, of Perkiomenville, Pennsylvania, was arrested Tuesday by the Knox County Sheriff’s Office on charges of burglary, theft and criminal mischief.
Two weeks ago, Hackett was believed to have gone missing in Maine, where his car was found at an Owls Head residence. A message was written in black marker on the exterior of the home that resembled a suicide note, according to an affidavit written by the Knox County Sheriff’s Office.
When police searched the area around the cottage, they found footprints leading to the water and along the water’s edge they found shoes, two cans of Yoo-hoo and a can of sardines, according to the affidavit.
The discovery launched a massive land, air and sea search for Hackett. Despite involvement from multiple agencies, including Maine Marine Patrol, attempts to locate Hackett were unsuccessful.
On Feb. 24, Pen Bay Medical Center in Rockport notified the sheriff’s office that Hackett was in the emergency room. However, hospital staff did not disclose why he was there or permit police to interview him.
The Owls Head cottage is co-owned by Hackett’s family members. According to court documents, Hackett had only been to Maine once or twice.
Hackett allegedly damaged two doors by writing on them in permanent marker. A padlock to a door that led to a storage space under the cottage was allegedly broken off the door.
One kayak was taken from the cottage. Hackett is believed to have taken the kayak to nearby Sheep Island, where Maine Marine Patrol discovered footprints, a can of sardines and a pelt from either a fox or a coyote. The pelt likely belongs to Hackett, who has made art in the past from animal bones, according to the affidavit.
The kayak has not yet been found.
Hackett is being held at the Knox County Jail on $5,000 cash bail.