A GPS tracking device helped guide investigators to a suspect blamed for causing $7,000 in damage to equipment owned by the town of Colesville.

Authorities say 37-year-old Hugh Murphy of Harpursville has been charged with criminal mischief and petit larceny for allegedly using an excavator without permission.

According to the Broome County Sheriff's Office, Murphy allegedly took the equipment from a construction site to do some work around his home last winter.

Investigators utilized recorded GPS information to track where the excavator went after it was moved from the work site.

Colesville town highway superintendent Jim Bulger said a recording from a video camera revealed the unit had been backed into a tree. He said the excavator's bucket and door had been damaged.

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Contact WNBF News reporter Bob Joseph: bob@wnbf.com or (607) 772-8400 extension 233.

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