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Burglar Who Took $300K from Home Sent to State Prison

June 21, 2016

Contact: Daniel Sweeney, 215.348.6328, dbsweeney@buckscounty.org

A heroin-addicted burglar who stole about $300,000 from the grandmother of his girlfriend was sentenced Monday in Bucks County Common Pleas Court to serve 18 months to five years in state prison.

Daniel Costantini, 30, of Trevose, was arrested Oct. 2 at the Red Roof Inn on Lincoln Highway in Bensalem with his girlfriend, Ashle Kaucher, 26. Found in the room was more than $55,000 in cash, 231 bags of heroin, three-quarters of a pound of marijuana, an AK-47 rifle with ammunition, and several Xanax tablets.

Costantini told police he had gotten the money by breaking into the home of Ashle Kaucher’s grandmother the previous month in Middletown Township.

Carolyn Kaucher had reported the burglary on Sept. 17, saying a lock box containing approximately $300,000 had been taken from a safe in the master bedroom of her home. A rear window had been forced open, and police found two palm prints from Costantini on the outer glass.

Costantini told police that he had entered the house through that window, and had removed the lock box from inside the safe.

Ashle Kaucher denied being involved in the burglary. She did acknowledge buying a car with some of her grandmother’s money, and having used some of the marijuana and heroin purchased with the cash. She pleaded guilty Feb. 16 to receiving stolen property and was sentenced to serve 11 months and 29 days to 23 months and 29 days in the Bucks County Correctional Facility.

Police are still investigating the involvement of a third person in the burglary, said Deputy District Attorney Daniel B. Sweeney, who prosecuted the case.

Carolyn Kaucher said that Costantini and her granddaughter have been in a relationship for close to a decade, and that she “treated him as my son.”

She said that she had not locked the safe properly, enabling Costantini to open it and steal the lock box containing the cash. “What he did was pretty devastating,” she said.

Costantini pleaded guilty on March 14 to charges including burglary, criminal trespass, theft by unlawful taking, receiving stolen property, and possession of illegal drugs and paraphernalia. About $95,000 of the money has been recovered, and Judge C. Theodore Fritsch Jr. ordered Costantini to pay additional restitution of $200,000.

In court, Costantini blamed his crimes on drug addiction, saying that he was using heroin and crystal methamphetamine together. “I’m not making excuses, but I was desperate,” he told Fritsch. “I was using 20 bags (of heroin) a day. It was bad.”

To Carolyn Kaucher he said: “You did treat me as a son…I screwed that up, and I’m sorry.”

Defense attorney Niels Eriksen asked Fritsch to consider that Costantini’s crimes were non-violent, that he has cooperated with police investigating his alleged accomplice, and that he already has made significant restitution. “His focus should be on sobriety and doing what he can to make the victim whole,” Eriksen said.

Sweeney countered that $40,000 of the money was recovered not through Costantini’s cooperation, but rather through police investigation.

Fritsch told Costantini that his crimes had had a “profound effect” on Carolyn Kaucher. “Essentially, you betrayed her trust,” he said.

In addition to the burglary sentence, Fritsch imposed a concurrent sentence of 18 to 36 months for receiving stolen property.

The case was investigated by the Bensalem Township and Middletown Township police departments.

Approved for release by Michelle A. Henry, First Assistant District Attorney. 


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Office of the District Attorney
Bucks County Justice Center
100 N. Main Street
Doylestown, PA 18901 
Phone: 215-348-6344 
Fax: 215-348-6299

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