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Fire ‘N Stone in Tilton still open and ready for business after fire


TILTON — Fire 'N Stone owner Angelo Farruggia said Wednesday that his company is operating, albeit for a while without a showroom.

Farruggia said they have a lot of work to do to get the showroom back in order, but the company still has a 4,000 square-foot warehouse and employees who can do all of the fireplace and related work needed.

"We're grateful that nobody got hurt, but we have a lot of stuff to do and want to get it done quickly."

He went on to say that this is one of the most important times for people to prepare for winter and that he and his staff are there to assist.

Farruggia is setting up a temporary off-site office and the company will still be reachable by the same phone number at 293-4040. He said all people need to do is call for an appointment and all of their needs will be met.

"I am also very humbled," said Farruggia, who said the outpouring of support for him and his employees from the customers and community has been overwhelming and very kind.

"People have offered us temporary office space and temporary showroom space," he said. "And we are very grateful."

"The fire was a freak accident and it escalated very quickly," said Farruggia. "But it'll be back and better than ever."

Jordan’s opening at Funspot delayed

LACONIA — Jordan's Ice Creamery, a landmark in Belmont for the past 22 years, has postponed the opening of its ice cream stand at Funspot until next summer.

Craig Jordan, who manages the enterprise begun by father and mother, said that he originally intended to open this year, but construction of the building that will house the operation has been delayed. As time has passed he said it would not be worthwhile to open so near the end of the summer season.

"We will open in the spring of 2017," Jordan said, adding that the shop at Funspot will be a mirror image of the firm's flagship in Belmont, where nearly 30 flavors of ice cream are made and served alongside sugar-free ice creams and low-fat and no-fat yogurts in cones of four sizes as well as the "belly Buster," a bucket brimming with five scoops and toppings.

– Michael Kitch

Two arrested in another home invasion


LACONIA — Two men who are alleged to have committed a home invasion at 93 Church St. Apt. B Tuesday night tied up at least one of the victims with duct tape, threatened him with a gun, and stole his money and his sneakers.

This is the second home invasion in as many weeks in Laconia but Capt. Matt Canfield told WMUR News that police don't believe the two are connected.

08-04 Zachary Estevez

Zachary Estevez, 19, of 38 Pearl St. waived his arraignment and agreed to $50,000 cash or $100,000 corporate surety.

08-04 Ryan Chase

Ryan W. Chase, 20, of 193 Moultonborough Neck Road in Moultonborough appeared in court, where his attorney argued unsuccessfully that the police had insufficient cause to arrest his client. He is being held on $50,000 cash bail or $100,000 corporate surety.

Both men are charged with one count each of armed robbery, one count each of conspiracy to commit armed robbery, and one count each of burglary in the night time, which, if either is convicted, carries an enhanced penalty.

Affidavits obtained from the Belknap County Superior Court said a witness called them at 8:24 p.m. to report that he saw two men dressed in dark clothing accosting two other men in one of his apartments. He told police that he saw and heard two men yelling at the men in the apartment, telling them to get down and screaming at them "Where is the (stuff)? Where is the (stuff)?"

He reported they fled down Church Street toward CVS.

A Laconia officer interviewed two people on Howard Street, one of whom said he saw two men, one wearing a white shirt, run through his back yard and into the basement of 33 Howard St. The second said he saw the victims go to a vehicle and that one of them took off a dark sweatshirt.

One male victim said he was trussed with duct tape and hit in the head with a "pistol." He said his assailants stole $800.

Police noticed in plain view a black sweatshirt in the car, seized it, had it towed to the Laconia Police Station where they obtained a warrant and searched it. They also got a warrant for the apartment at 93 Church St.
Laconia Police cordoned off the area and Gilford Police responded with a K-9 and his handler and tracked the two to a basement at 33 Howard St. Chase and Estevez were arrested. Affidavits said Chase had a set of keys on him that belonged to a car found on Howard Street while Estevez had a receipt for single purchase of duct tape from Walmart in Gilford dated Aug. 2 and time stamped for 6:26 p.m.

Affidavits said the car was registered to Chase and police found a Walmart bag with a piece of duct tape on it. They also found a black shirt, a pair of black pants, and a ceramic bowl with what appeared to be marijuana residue in the car. In the trunk, the said they found $373 in cash, a sizable bag of what police believe to be marijuana and a pair of Air Jordan sneakers believed to belong to one of the victims.

As of 6:31 p.m. Wednesday, both men were still being held in the Belknap County House of Corrections.

08-04 home invasion police

Police blocked traffic for some time Tuesday night around Church Street while they searched for three people believed to be involved in a home invasion. (Courtesy photo)