Panhandler Accused Of Using Donations For Drugs

BRANFORD, Conn. (AP) _ Branford’s police chief is urging people to be wary of panhandlers following the arrest of a man accused of using handouts to buy heroin.

Sixty-three-year-old Lawrence Hayden was arrested Tuesday on drug possession charges and released on a promise to appear for a later court date. A phone number was not listed for him at his Branford address.

Police say he has been a fixture at an intersection where he posted signs saying he was homeless and hungry.

Chief Kevin Halloran said Wednesday that people asking for money on roadsides are motivated by drugs in many cases. He said the community has several social service programs that provide food and shelter for the needy.

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