Sheriff Robert Arnold surveys about $250,000 worth of stolen equipment Oct. 23, 2013, after it was recovered on Cranor Road near Murfreesboro, Tenn. One suspect has since been charged with multiple thefts. (Photo submitted)
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. -- Authorities recovered an additional $120,000 worth of stolen lawnmowers Thursday in Centralia, Ill., following the bust of a large theft ring that was dismantled Wednesday in Rutherford County.
The items were recovered from a residence on Cranor Road, said Sheriff Robert Arnold.
A team of detectives and Felony Arrest Search Tactical Team officers recovered about $250,000 worth of stolen property after serving a search warrant Wednesday at the home in the Kittrell community.
James Allen Presley, 36, of Bradyville Pike has been charged with theft over $60,000, two counts of theft between $1,000 and $10,000, and violation of probation. He is being held for Cannon and Coffee counties. The investigation remains open.
During the investigation, Arnold said Presley cooperated with detectives and notified them of them warehouse in Illinois, where more stolen goods was stored.
The stolen lawnmowers were sold for $10,000 total, but the lawnmowers were valued at about $12,000 each.
“It’s a good day for everybody when we get to return the owners’ property,” Arnold said, adding he expects the property to be given back during the next few days. Owners of all the property have been identified.
Local detectives worked with investigators in Cannon, Williamson, Wilson and Coffee counties to recover the property in less than 48 hours.
“Working together, we found the thief,” Arnold said.
Authorities also recovered farm tractors, riding lawnmowers, four-wheelers, a tiller and an air compressor.
The investigation started during the summer months where detectives learned thieves allegedly stole property from neighboring communities and stored the stolen items in Rutherford County. Detectives worked with investigators in other counties and obtained a warrant to search property at 1398 Cranor Road.
Arnold credited the detectives from Rutherford County and surrounding counties for working together on the investigation that resulted in the recovery of the property.
“Thieves know no boundaries,” he said.