Stolen tires returned; arrests made

Published 10:20 am Thursday, May 23, 2013

WINTON – It’s been documented over the years that criminals often return to the scene of the crime.

That exact scenario did occur near here Saturday, but this time around the return trip was made in an effort to put back what was stolen. However, that deed didn’t prevent two Hertford County men from being arrested, nor did it let an employee of the place of business victimized off the hook as he was jailed as well.

According to Hertford County Sheriff Juan Vaughan, Efram Defawn Vann, 41, of Liverman Mill Road, Ahoskie, and 29-year-old Davon McCrae Faison of East Saludia Hall Road, Ahoskie, were both charged with possession of stolen goods following an alleged heist from the Colony Tire location on River Road near Nucor.

Additionally, an employee of Colony Tire – Benjamin Matthew Cloe, 25, of Kale Street, Windsor – was arrested and charged with obtaining property by false pretense, embezzlement, and larceny by an employee.

Cloe remains incarcerated in the Hertford County Jail, held under a $50,000 secured bond, after making his first court appearance on Tuesday.

Vann and Faison each posted their 10,000 secured bonds on Saturday and also made their initial court appearance on Tuesday.

The trio’s connection to the crime began with a simple traffic stop performed at 4 a.m. on May 18 by Hertford County Sheriff’s Deputy Chase Oliver while on patrol on old US 13 in the Oak Villa community near Winton. Vaughan said that Oliver noted a truck pulling a trailer loaded with tires and stopped the vehicle.

“Seeing that these were new commercial type truck tires, Deputy Oliver asked the driver of the truck (later identified as Vann) as to where the tires came from,” Vaughan said. “He was told they were picked up from a (tire) dealer in Suffolk, VA but no paperwork, like a bill of sale, could be produced to prove that.”

With no legal or criminal basis on which to detain the driver and passenger, Vaughan said that Oliver had no other option than to send the men on their way.

“However, Deputy Oliver did obtain the identification and contact information of the two men,” Vaughan said. “Those details helped to crack this case as it was later discovered the tires were stolen.”

Oliver, joined by other Hertford County deputies, began to check area tire dealers on Saturday morning to see if they had been victimized. Sure enough, a door was found unlocked at Colony Tire. Vaughan said the manager of that business was contacted and met deputies at the property to conduct an inventory of the tires. A total of 100 tires – valued at $52,000 – were discovered missing from three buildings on the property.

“When Deputy Oliver called Mr. Vann, he was told that the tires were back where they came from,” said Vaughan. “Deputy Oliver asked where were the tires originally at, to which Mr. Vann replied, ‘Colony Tire’.”

Vaughan said Cloe’s involvement in the case was, “He opened the buildings up and was on the property when Mr. Vann and Mr. Faison came in to take the tires.”

The Sheriff praised the work of Oliver.

“Even though he had no grounds on which to hold the two men upon making the initial traffic stop, Deputy Oliver followed his instincts and knew that something wasn’t right about seeing a trailer full of tires at 4 o’clock on a Saturday morning,” Vaughan said. “He obtained all the necessary information about the truck driver and his passenger, just in case it was later needed, and it was needed. His efforts saved one of our local businesses over $50,000 in inventory.”

Vaughan added that HCSO Sgt. Tom Helms and Deputy Charles Reynolds assisted in the investigation.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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