Sheriff’s deputies have investigated several thefts recently including one incident where the suspect said he pawned stolen guns to obtain money to buy his children clothes and school supplies.
Tuesday, Deputy Tim Harwood was dispatched to Hard Rock Lane near Durant where Joy Miller told him that two rifles and a shotgun had been stolen out of a closet.
The victim named a suspect she had allowed to stay at her residence recently, according to the report. On Wednesday, Durant Police Officer Brandon Laxton called Harwood and said the guns were found at a pawn shop, and that Brian Wibben, who was presently in jail, had pawned them.
Harwood went to jail to question Wibben, 41, and according to the report, he said he had been given two gift cards recently to purchase school supplies and clothes for his children. He said he thought Miller had taken one of the cards, which she denied. The report stated that Wibben then admitted to taking and pawning the guns to replace the missing gift card, so he could purchase clothes and school supplies.
The District Attorney’s Office will be reviewing the report to determine formal charges.
In other thefts, Harold Lee Gayle, 20, Durant, has been charged with felony second-degree burglary, knowingly concealing stolen property and misdemeanor possession of burglary tools. He was arrested and charged following an investigation by the Bryan County Sheriff’s Office.
Gayle is accused of burglarizing a home in the 300 block of Vansickle Street in Kenefic and also possessing items that had been stolen from the Kenefic Baptist Church. Deputy Vinny Cacace was dispatched to the Kenefic Baptist Church to investigate a burglary. The report stated that two televisions, $10 in cash, basketballs, food, toilet paper, paper towels and two canisters of lemonade mix were stolen.
The next day, Cacace investigated a burglary at a residence on Vansickle Street, and according to the report, Allen Hicks said the back door had been kicked in and the house was ransacked. There was blood in the home and on the back porch, and it appeared that the burglar fell onto a curio cabinet and cut an arm. There were blood-soaked towels and blankets in the house.
Cacace and Deputy Aubrey Stanfield drove around the area, and at the intersection of Vansickle and Rose streets, they found two bags near an abandoned house. The report stated that the bags contained items matching the description of some of the things stolen from the church.
The deputies continued their investigation which led to the arrest of Gayle. The report stated that Gayle admitted to burglarizing the house.
Deputies have also investigated several other burglaries and thefts recently. Randal Copeland told Sheriff’s Sgt. Jason Bannowsky that a laptop computer and two basketball rings had been stolen from his home.
Vern Devour told Deputy John Ray Haislip that a riding mower, two weed eaters and an air compressor had been stolen from his property in the 1100 block of Franklin Street in Colbert.
Deputy Cacace investigated the burglary of Bill McKinster’s residence in the 100 block of East Sophia Loop, and according to the report, a crossbow and a shotgun were stolen. Nothing else was taken.
Blake White told Deputy Stanfield that several boats had been burglarized at Sandpoint Boat Slips and stereo equipment was stolen.