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Break-in investigation leads to drug charges

A local man who was wanted for questioning concerning a car break-in near the Franklin County Courthouse was found in possession of drugs as well, officials said.

Robert Aaron Sharpston, 51, Mills Trailer Court, Lot 10, Russellville, was arrested for unlawful breaking and entering a motor vehicle, first-degree possession of marijuana and failing to register as an ex-felon, Russellville Police Chief Chris Hargett said.

According to Hargett, investigators received a report last Tuesday that someone had broken into a car parked on Limestone Street near the Franklin County Courthouse while municipal court was being held next door the previous day.

Investigator Lt. Scotty Lowery said a man could be seen on video looking into car windows and pulling on door handles until he gained access to the vehicle on Limestone Street.

Lowery said the vehicle had been pilfered through but no items had been reported stolen.

Hargett said during the course of the investigation, Sharpston was identified as the man in the video.

Hargett said when he was picked up for questioning by investigators on Friday, he was found to be in possession of marijuana.

When he was being booked on those charges, Hargett said investigators discovered Sharpston had multiple felony conviction in Florida and Alabama but had failed to register with the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office when he moved into the area.

“According to Alabama law, if you have two previous felony convictions, you have to register with the local sheriff within 24 hours of arriving in that county,” Hargett said.

“Mr. Sharpston had apparently been living here for several weeks and had still not registered with the sheriff’s office.”

Sharpston was released from custody on bond.