The Police Log is a digest of reports filed by the Johnston Police. Chief Richard S. Tamburini or Deputy Chief David DeCesare has reviewed all reports.
Patrolman Ryan Lemieux reported that he and several other patrol units were heading to the scene of a disturbance on Indian Valley Drive around 5:55 a.m. on March 31 when dispatch reported that the suspect had left the scene and then described the car and gave the plate number. Sgt. Steven Guilmette reported seeing the same car take a turn against the red light from Brown onto Hartford. He said he shined his spotlight on the driver and recognized him from past contacts. He said he turned his cruiser around, activated his lights and siren and followed but the driver did not pull over and instead sped up. Guilmette said he used his own speedometer to clock the car at 60 miles an hour for about a mile but was unable to catch up because of the rain and snow. He said he did see the car run a red light at Bishop Hill Road before it sped into Scituate and out of Guilmette’s sight. Guilmette said the weather and road conditions prompted him to end the pursuit in the interest of public safety and call Scituate and State Police with a description of the car.
In the meantime, Lemieux got a statement from the residents at the Indian Valley Drive address where the call originated. A man there told Lemieux he was awakened by the sound of his daughter arguing with her boyfriend, who was angry because she refused to let him come in. He said he called police because he feared the argument might escalate.
Later, a warrant was drawn up for Anthony C. Furia, 20, of 242 Waterman Ave. in North Providence. Patrolman Luca Lancellotti said Furia turned himself in at headquarters around 11:15 a.m. the same day. He was charged with reckless driving and eluding police and driving on a suspended license. Furia was arraigned before a justice of the peace and assessed $1,000 personal recognizance. An Assistant Attorney General declared Furia a probation violator and he was remanded to the ACI to await an appearance in District Court. Furia had eight priors for domestic disturbances or driving on a suspended license.
An employee of the East Side Shell gas station on Hartford Avenue turned himself in on March 30 after the manager of the store told Patrolman Edward Gonzalez that 41 scratch tickets had gone unaccounted for over the last two months and that he suspected a certain employee. He said five Lucky X; 17 Cash Spectacular; and 19 Black Diamond tickets were unaccounted for and that they cost $20 each, for a total of $820. Gonzalez reported that he went to the store around 10:20 a.m. to speak with the manager and view video of the employee “manipulating” the lottery scratch ticket display and pulling several rolls of the tickets. The manager told Gonzalez the employee did not know that he is under suspicion and that he was due to start his shift at 6 p.m. Gonzalez said he took a copy of the video to Det. Major Michael Colucci and informed him of the situation.
Det. Anthony Sasso said the suspect, identified as Michael J. Donohue, 20, of 597 Durfee Hill Rd. in Glocester, turned himself in around 4:50 p.m. and admitted that he had taken the tickets. He said he was taking the tickets in an attempt to make money to pay off his debts. He was later released on $5,000 personal recognizance.
Photo surveillance and witnesses led to the arrest of a North Providence woman for stealing a pocketbook at the Stop & Shop on Commerce Way on March 28. Patrolman Joseph McGinn took the first report at the Stop & Shop where he spoke with the victim. The woman told McGinn she was shopping with her pocketbook in the shopping cart when she went to check on a particular item and noticed that her purse was gone when she turned back to the cart. She said she didn’t see who took it and there were no other witnesses. She said her wallet had four credit cards and four retail gift cards worth a total of $100 and about $3 in cash. McGinn said he was still in the Stop & Shop when another patrolman was dispatched to Valero Gas on Putnam Pike for an attempt to use a credit card to buy three cartons of cigarettes. The clerk at Valero told police a young woman came in and tried to use the card but the woman left the card on the counter when they asked for identification and departed the store. The card belonged to the woman at the Stop & Shop. The surveillance from the supermarket was delivered to detectives and they posted it on the Rhode Island’s Most Wanted website.
On April 2, a North Providence detective told Det. James Brady she knew the woman in the surveillance video and prepared a photo lineup with one of her photos from their department, and Brady and another detective took it to the Valero gas station where two separate witnesses identified her in two separate photo lineups.
An hour and 45 minutes later, Brady got a call informing him that the suspect was picked up at the Smithfield Stop & Shop being held by Smithfield Police on a warrant for failure to appear for a stolen goods charge in District Court. He said she was also on probation for a stolen goods conviction in Warwick. Smithfield said they had no new charges on her but were holding her until a friend showed up with $455 for surety bail for the bench warrant.
Brady said he met with Kayla M. Argenti, 22, of 95 Olympia Ave. in North Providence. He said he read her rights and asked her if she was ready to cooperate with the investigation and “she asked if she could see the evidence we had on her first.” Brady said he showed her the surveillance photos and “she started shaking her head up and down.” Brady said she admitted she took the pocketbook and admitted she tried to use the credit card. Argenti was taken to Johnston headquarters and held there, waiting for her friend with the $455. Brady said she told him she wanted to tell them where she dumped the victim’s pocketbook in the hope that the victim would be grateful enough to drop the charges. Argenti was arraigned before a justice of the peace and bail was set at $10,000 surety. She paid the $455 surety for the bench warrant but could not come up with the surety. She was remanded to the ACI to await an April 11 District Court date.