More burglary charges against man, woman

More charges were lodged Thursday against a Trout Run area man who, along with his girlfriend, allegedly stole scrap metal and other items that they sold to get cash in order to support their heroin addiction, state police said.

James Thomas McCourt, 30, of 6230 Rose Valley Road, now has been charged with breaking into four additional properties – sheds and barns – in Fairfield, Gamble and Eldred townships in July and August of last year, Trooper Michael Shipman said.

The properties were at the following locations: 6300 block of Wallis Run Road and the 7600 block of Rose Valley Road, both in Gamble Township; the 2600 block of Brush Ridge Road in Fairfield Township and the 1800 block of Quaker Hill Road in Eldred Township, Shipman said.

Some of the items stolen included spools of copper wire, a leaf blower, 12-volt batteries, a chain saw and extension cords, Shipman said.

McCourt’s girlfriend, Ashley Marie Sortman, 26, of 1733 Lincoln Drive, Loyalsock Township, allegedly was involved by selling some of the stolen items, Shipman said. While McCourt sold about $354 worth of stolen scrap, Sortman sold 10 times as much, the investigator alleged.

McCourt, who was caught in late July allegedly stealing copper from a storage barn-garage in Hepburn Township, was arraigned before District Judge James Carn on four additional counts each of burglary, felony trespassing, theft and receiving stolen property and one count of conspiracy. He was recommitted to the Lycoming County Prison in lieu of an additional $75,000 bail.

Sortman, taken into custody on Thursday, was arraigned on multiple counts of conspiracy and jailed in lieu of $75,000 bail.