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From Staff Reports
Two area residents are in jail and a third is being sought in connection with the burglary of a county road district barn over the weekend.
According to Greene County Sheriff’s Department Investigator Brad Warrick, Joseph Adam Williford, 28, of Old Federal Road, McLain, Cortnee Jewel Parker, 28, of Merrill Cutoff Road, Lucedale, are being charged with breaking into the District Four headquarters on Man Moulds Road in Vernal early Saturday.
Authorities also have a warrant for the arrest of Dan Calvin Tarver, 48, of Ford James Road, after he allegedly provided assistance to the duo.
Warrick said a passerby noticed the chain on the main gate to the compound had been cut Saturday morning and reported it to authorities. When officers arrived they found the chain on the gas pumps at the facility had also been cut, but found no evidence the main building, where the switch for the pumps’ power supply is located, had been broken into.
Using surveillance video from the compound, investigators identified Williford and determined the gas pumps had somehow been activated and gas stolen. The images also indicated the same suspect returned to the location a short time later and began filling a 55-gallon drum, but left the scene after only a few minutes without completely filling the drum.
A bulletin was released identifying Williford as a suspect in the heist and later that day the couple was spotted at a Leakesville convenience store and taken into custody for questioning.
Based on statements taken from the two, authorities believe Tarver provided assistance to Williford and Parker, including giving them the bolt cutters and 55-gallon drum. He is being sought on a warrant for conspiracy to commit a crime.
Williford was recently released from the custody of the MDOC and was on probation at the time of his arrest. He was convicted in 2014 of commercial burglary, in 2015 of felony possession of a controlled substance and again in 2015 for burglary of a dwelling. He is being charged in this past weekend’s incident with burglary of a non-residence.
At the time of her arrest on Saturday Parker had an outstanding warrant for failing to appear on charges of possession of marijuana. She is being charged with trespassing in the weekend incident.