October 11, 2012 11:01:19 AM
Three men have been arrested and charged with the break-in and theft from a pair of Starkville businesses.
Investigators with the Oktibbeha County Sheriff's Office arrested Tyler Miller, 19, Christopher Wilhite, 32, and Brandon Wilhite, 28. All three men are from Eupora.
The arrests stem from burglaries this summer at Doss Electric and 5D Limited Auto Sales.
Dow Carter, owner of Doss Electric, said the three men stole a truck, trailer and scrap copper.
He claimed the men accessed his business by entering the back part of the shop through the woods. The men then stole the trailer that housed the scrap copper coil and used the truck to haul the trailer.
Carder estimated that more than $30,000 in property was stolen. While the truck and trailer have since been recovered, Carder called them a total loss.
Carder said he has beefed up security as this business in the wake of the thefts.
"We've added security lighting and cameras," he said.
Carder also praised the work of the OCSO and other law enforcement agencies who assisted in the investigation.
"They did an excellent job,'' Carder said. "They stayed pretty well in touch with us to let us know what was going on It involved three county sheriff's departments."
Carder also said that none of the three men arrested have ever been employed by Doss Electric.
Miller was charged with four counts of grand larceny and one felony count of taking of a motor vehicle.
Christopher Wilhite was charged with three counts of grand larceny.
Brandon Wilhite was charged with three counts of grand larceny and one count of felony taking of a motor vehicle.
A press release issued by the OCSO said the four-month investigation is continuing and that more arrests are expected.
Sarah Fowler covered crime, education and community related events for The Dispatch.
1. Historic Columbus mansion gets new owner COLUMBUS & LOWNDES COUNTY
2. Testimony: Rape suspect's DNA found on victim STARKVILLE & OKTIBBEHA COUNTY
4. Hilton: I'm not afraid of an OCH analysis STARKVILLE & OKTIBBEHA COUNTY
5. Is Malik Newman leaving MSU? STARKVILLE & OKTIBBEHA COUNTY