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From Staff Reports
For several months local law enforcement officials have tried to track down the people responsible for multiple instances of destructive joy-riding in the northwest part of the county. With the arrests of three area residents earlier this week, Sheriff Stanley McLeod hopes the ordeal is nearing its end.
McLeod said three suspects were charged Monday with purposely tearing up hay fields and pastures on Jones McLain Road near the intersection with Indian Hill Road near Sand Hill. Those arrested were Anthony Randall Lee Jr., 27, of 26 Murdock Smith Road, Richton; Caleb Blake Feduccia, 24, of 411 Camp 8 Road, Richton; and Kyle Wayne Earwood, 19, of 1549 Hwy. 15 N., Richton. Lee and Feduccia are facing three counts each of malicious mischief, while Earwood is facing two counts.
McLeod said the property in question is being leased for hay production by Trent Jones, who had been targeted multiple times over the past several months. The three suspects are accused of repeatedly ‘cutting donuts’ and ‘rutting up’ the pastures.
McLeod said he doesn’t believe the property was being ‘targeted’ for the vandalism, but was simply a location of convenience for the joyriders.
“I’m not sure why they did it,” McLeod said of the three suspects Tuesday. “Other than just showing out.”
“I hate that it had to come down to this, but every action has a reaction and this is going to be a bad reaction for these three. Of course it was already bad for Mr. Jones, because he was the one losing hard-earned money.”
Lee and Feduccia have been released on $1,200 bonds, while Earwood is out on a $1,000 bond. All three are set for court appearances on Jan. 29.
McLeod said anyone with information of this type of activity or of vandalism or theft of road signs or mail boxes, is encouraged to report the crimes by calling (601)394-2341 or anonymously through CrimeStoppers at (877)787-5859, or texting the info along with “CSTIP” to 274637.