Police in Fall River, Nova Scotia have a busy day of combing through hundreds of rare books, art, and antiques that were seized from a suburban home in this small community of 12,000 people. Police were tipped off about the objects in the home of John Mark Tillman when his former partner became suspicious of the items in his home. He has been charged with four counts of possession of stolen property.
RCMP officers on the scene report that the collection was set up like a private museum, and included items like a first edition of Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species, paintings from the 19th century, including one from the Nova Scotia legislature, and even a medieval suit of armour. There are almost 1,000 artifacts. Police have no idea how Tillman came to acquire the items, but they are certain that most of it is stolen. They have no idea whether he stole them himself or simply bought them off the black market (maybe he Ocean’s 11’d them!), but are working with the FBI to find out. They have also seized items from businesses and collectors that Tillman has been associated with.
Tillman himself sounds like a real prince — last fall he was charged with 14 counts of assault and uttering threats against his ex-partner and her dog. A month earlier he also defrauded a body shop out of $1900 in repairs on his BMW, and then claimed he couldn’t pay it because he couldn’t work and had no money, yet had $15,000 to bail himself out of jail on the assault charges. He will appear in court today to face the stolen property charges.
Megan Patterson is the Science and Technology Editor at Paper Droids and currently a Toronto Standard intern. She has also written for WORN Fashion Journal, Elevate, and Salon Magazines. She also tweets more than is healthy or wise.