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5 charged with tractor-trailer break-ins

Staff Writer

Five suspects are accused of using a hammer to break into tractor-trailers at a Vale trucking company, stealing a number of items this month, deputies said.
The incidents took place sometime between 5 p.m. Aug. 23 and Aug. 25, the day company officials with Sain and Heavner Trucking reported the break-ins to the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office, deputies said.
On Friday, officers charged James Steven Fredell, 35, of 1969 Lance Lane in Vale, with one felony count of possession of stolen goods.
Mickey Gene Mellon, 46, of 245 Boyles Road in Lawndale, along with Debra Suzanne Moore, 34, of 6517 Deerwood Trail, Betsy May Carpenter, 29, of 1969 Lance Lane, and Cody Dewayne Thomas, 17, of 1991 Lance Lane, all in Vale, were previously charged in the case, an agency press release said.
Moore, Mellon and Carpenter all face one felony count each of receiving stolen goods and possession of stolen goods. An additional count of obtaining property by false pretenses was filed against Carpenter, the release said.
Thomas is accused of one felony count each of breaking into a motor vehicle, larceny and possession of stolen goods along with one misdemeanor charge for injury to personal property.
Each trailer contained a significant amount of soft drinks, bakery goods and Bosch products, the release said.
Detectives believed the suspects used a hammer, found near the vehicles, to break off the company seals and access the trailers.
As investigators continue to look into the case, more arrests may be made including petitions against two juveniles, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Each of the suspects is no longer behind Lincoln County bars.
Sheriff’s Detectives J. Propst and M. Burgess investigated the case.

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