Walker County District Attorney Bill Adair announced the arrests, along with Ray Capps, a patrol deputy with the Walker County Sheriff’s Office.
“This had been a serious problem that was affecting the infrastructure in some areas of the county,” Adair said. “Deputy Capps, with the help of several other deputies from the sheriff’s office, put together a great case which allowed us to charge these folks.”
Capps said the arrests were possible due to cooperation between all patrol shifts at the sheriff’s office, the DA’s office and the public.
“If it hadn’t been for people out in the community talking to us, we would not have been able to put this case together,” Capps said. “Their information led us to the suspects who were committing these crimes.”
Capps said the suspects were two separate groups of people, but most of the incidents took place in the communities of Pumpkin Center and Copeland Ferry. Capps said Jefferson County authorities were also searching for suspects for phone cables taken in that county.
“They were climbing telephone poles and cutting the cables,” Adair said. “Many times they would cut the cables and leave them there for a while, then come back to get them later.”
Those arrested in connection with the case included:
• Jimmy Ray Hicks, 37, and Brandy Carnes, 33, both of Quinton. They were charged with first-degree theft and first-degree receiving stolen property. At the time of their arrests, Capps said Hicks and Carnes were found in the area of an active methamphetamine operation. In connection with the meth lab, the two were both charged with trafficking meth, first-degree manufacturing of a controlled substance, possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia. Both are being held in the Walker County Jail.
•Josh Kizzire, 30, of Dora, Mickey Merritt, 38, of Quinton, and Latisha Frost, 31, of Townley were all charged with second-degree receiving stolen property.
All are being held in the Walker County Jail.
•Danny Doss Jr, 35, of Dora was also charged with second-degree receiving stolen property.
Capps said the incident has caused Doss’ probation to be revoked and he will be transferred to a state prison facility.
A juvenile was also arrested and charged in the incident, Adair said.
Capps said thousands of feet of cable were stolen over a period of time from February until August.
“We got involved in the case around the first of June,” he said. “We never caught them in the act, but we were pretty close to it several times.”
Sheriff’s deputies took the lead in investigating the case because investigators from the office were tied up with several murder cases.
“The deputies did an outstanding job on this investigation,” Adair said. “They spent hundreds of man hours on this case, and I appreciate their hard work.”
Walker County Sheriff John Mark Tirey commended the deputies on their work as well.
“This was an example of very good police work,” Tirey said. “Our deputies worked hard on this case, and they did a good job of putting the pieces together to find the suspects.”