Police thwart theft spreePublished 1:47pm Tuesday, July 16, 2013
By David Goodwin
The Tallapoosa Sheriff’s Department and Dadeville Police announced Monday the arrest of four area teens in an early summer spree of thefts and breaking and enterings.
Three juveniles and 18-year-old Jason Adam Buford face a total of 64 felony counts and another 35 misdemeanors for the burglaries, which were concentrated in the Sandy Creek area of Lake Martin in late June and early July.
Investigators recovered a variety of items, mostly stolen from unlocked vehicles, garages and boat houses, Barbour said. There were at least 29 different victims, officials said in a press release Monday.
“They made quite a run,” said Dadeville Police Chief David Barbour.
Tallapoosa County Sheriff Jimmy Abbettt praised the efforts of both agencies “in investigating and getting these cases resolved in a timely manner.”
Items stolen ranged from high-dollar watersports equipment like wakeboards, paddle boards and kayaks, to personal and home electronics like televisions, computers and surround sound systems.
Approximately $20,000 in property was reported stolen, and investigators recovered around $16,000.
Both law enforcement officials said they have some stolen property for which they don’t yet know an owner. So any resident of the Sandy Creek area who has noticed items missing is encouraged to call and set up a viewing opportunity.
Buford, the only suspect named
due to his age, faces four felony counts of second-degree theft of property and a misdemeanor count of possession of stolen property. He is a Jackson’s Gap resident.
Two of the juveniles, ages 16 and 17, face the bulk of the charges. Each one is charged with 17 counts of breaking and entering a vehicle, a felony count of first-degree theft of property and nearly two dozen misdemeanor theft and burglary charges.
“I have to say, my investigators and the sheriff’s did an outstanding job of working together on this,” Barbour said. “This is the end result when you get all the agencies together for the common good.”
Items stolen included: sunglasses, GPS Garmins, canoes, wakeboards, firearms, fishing equipment, coolers, personal floatation devices, paddle Board, kayak, televisions, computer, surround sound system, alcohol, tobacco products, U.S. currency, battery, chainsaw and other items.