Detectives with the Grays Harbor County Sheriff’s Office have suggested charges for 8 people, two remain jailed, after over $40,000 in stolen equipment was recovered at a Montesano home this week.
Chief Criminal Deputy Steve Shumate said that the department was dispatched to a residence on Minkler Road of Montesano regarding the theft of two pieces of equipment in late September. The theft was initially reported to involve a Kubota Backhoe and a John Deere tractor.
During the course of the investigation, deputies learned that numerous other items had been taken to include a Pace 20 Foot enclosed cargo trailer, a John Deere Gator ORV, various implements for the tractor, as well as tools and household items. The total value of the theft appears to be in excess of $40,000. The theft appeared to have occurred over the course of several days as the home at the time was unoccupied.
Deputies and detectives investigated this case that resulted in numerous interviews, and searches being conducted on Dekay Road of Hoquiam, as well as a search warrant executed on Tornow Drive of Montesano. The search at a residence on Dekay Road occurred on 10/03/16 and resulted in the recovery of the Kubota Backhoe/Excavator, John Deere tractor, and Pace trailer as well as several of the tools and household items that had been stolen.
On 10/19/16 at approximately 3:15 pm, several deputies, GHCSO detectives, and DTF detectives executed a search warrant at a residence on Tornow Drive. During the search warrant, the stolen John Deere Gator was located along with 13 firearms, suspected illegal drugs, and approximately $750 cash. Deputies/detectives also located numerous other items believed to be stolen. One of those items included a stolen Stihl Line cut-off saw taken earlier in the year from the City of Westport Water Department.
Deputies arrested two residents from this location; a 34-year-old man and his 27-year-old girlfriend. Both subjects were convicted felons and not allowed to be in possession of the firearms. The man has an extensive criminal history and was arrested and booked into the Grays Harbor County Jail for Trafficking Stolen Property, Possession of Stolen Property, and VUCSA – Possession with intent to deliver. The female was also arrested and booked on the same charges.
Deputies and detectives spent numerous hours on this case and arrested or recommended charges for several individuals over the past month. In addition to the two mentioned above, those additional suspects include two Aberdeen male transients, one 27 and the other 33 years of age, a 31-year-old Aberdeen man, 48-year-old Hoquiam man, 26-year-old Aberdeen man, and another 31-year-old Aberdeen man. Charges ranged from Trafficking in Stolen Property to Theft and Possession of Stolen Property.
Shumate noted that not all individuals were involved with the actual theft, however, numerous subjects were involved with the sale/trade of stolen property for the purposes of acquiring illegal drugs. Deputies and detectives are continuing to work on ties to other crimes.