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Law Enforcement Report

Law officers with the City of Water Valley and Sheriff’s Department spent several hours Monday afternoon searching for a suspect in a weekend armed robbery. The suspect was eventually caught in the county and is detained in the county jail. – Photo by Jack Gurner

WATER VALLEY – Police have released details of the burglary and armed robbery that occurred Sunday morning around 2 a.m.

Columbus Buford, 73, of 515 Calhoun Street, was robbed at gunpoint, according to Capt. Roger Thomas of the WVPD. “A masked male entered the home and demanded money,” Thomas said. 

There was a fight during which Buford was injured. The suspect then took money and fled the scene, Thomas continued. Officer Nathan Noe was first to arrive at the residence and was joined in the investigation by Officers Lan Smith and Jamie Caldwell.

On Monday, Police and the Sheriff’s Department officers conducted a search for Gary Caldwell, who was located at 2226 CR 121 with his girlfriend Cecelia Cook. Both were arrested, Thomas said.

Gary Caldwell, 24, was charged with armed robbery and burglary of a dwelling. Cecelia Cook, 18, was charged with conspiracy to commit armed robbery and accessory after the fact.

Judge Trent Howell arraigned Caldwell and Cook in Water Valley City Court. Bond for Gary Caldwell was set at $150,000.00 and bond for Cecelia Cook set at $125,000.00.

Capt. Thomas commended the WVPD officers for a thorough investigation of the crime. “These officers worked for many hours and got the information quickly that lead to the arrest of Caldwell and Cook,” Thomas said. He also thanked the Yalobsuha County Sheriff’s Office for their assistance with the capture and arrest of the suspects.

Even though arrests have been made, the case is still under investigation, Thomas added.

Police Question Scantily Dressed Driver, Investigate Robbery

By Jack Gurner

WATER VALLEY – Police searched Saturday morning for a vehicle with paint missing and a driver with pants missing after a female drove into the lumberyard of Valley Lumber and Hardware on North Main Street wearing only a bra and panties.

Employees said that the woman got out of the car and danced while calling the name of a man she claimed to have married Friday.

“When she’d dance the panties would slip further down in the back,” a male employee told the Herald.

He added that the woman had a little card stuffed in the waistband of her undies. The card turned out to be her driver’s license.

Employees called 911 while she was still in the lumberyard, but she got back into her car and left headed north on Main Street before police arrived.

Officer Jamie Caldwell was in the northern part of the city and responded to the 8:07 a.m. call. He searched the North Main Street and Central area and then went to Valley Lumber and Hardware to talk with witnesses.

Employees gave Caldwell additional information about the vehicle and the man whose name she called and also expressed concerns that she might be driving impaired. The search continued.

Minutes later the dispatcher broadcast that the woman had been at the Sheriff’s Department on Calhoun Street and was leaving in her car. She turned onto Railroad Street and went into the parking lot of El Charrito where she got out briefly.

She got back in her vehicle and made a wide turn onto Railroad Street bumping onto the curb. She then parked, turned on her flashers, and visited the Farmer’s Market where she raised a few eyebrows.

“Even Wilbur turned in his chair to see what was going on,” a Farmer’s Market customer said of Wilbur Herring, a regular vendor at the market.

By this time Caldwell arrived and asked the woman, “Where you going?”

The woman said she was celebrating her recent marriage. Caldwell led her back to her car and asked if she had anything to put on. She opened the trunk and got a towel that she wrapped around herself. The towel didn’t stay on very long.

He asked for her license and she pulled it from her waistband.

The woman sat in her car while Caldwell made several phone calls. At 9:16 a.m. he asked her to step out of the car and place her hands behind her back.

“I can see you don’t have any weapons on you,” Caldwell said.

The woman asked if she was going to jail as the officer closed the handcuffs. He explained that she was just going to the police station. No charges were filed.

On a more serious note, police are investigating a burglary and armed robbery, according to Lt. Rick McCuan. The incident occurred around 2 a.m. Sunday morning on Calhoun Street.

Lt. McCuan reported the following law enforcement activity within the Water Valley City limits during the past two weeks:

• Made ten arrests for driving under suspension;

• Made two arrests for simple assault;

• Made two arrests for public drunk;

• Made an arrest for disorderly conduct and resisting arrest;

• Made an arrest for DUI, second offense;

• Made an arrest for simple domestic assault;

• Took four reports of malicious mischief;

• Took four reports of petty larceny;

• Took three reports of trespassing;

• Took two reports of leaving the scene of an accident;

• Took a report of burglary;

• Took a report of simple assault;

• Took a report of identity theft;

• Issued a citation for violation of the city beer ordinance, open container;

• Issued 42 traffic citations.


Two Drivers Face DUI Charges After Fleeing From Deputies

By David Howell

WATER VALLEY – A four-wheeler trailed by a truck pulling a trailer down Hwy. 32 triggered the suspicion of a patrolling deputy on Sunday night.

    When the deputy attempted to make a routine traffic stop, both vehicles fled.

    “They split up, the truck went one way and the four-wheeler went another,” Humphreys said. Deputies were ultimately able to stop both vehicles, catching the four-wheeler and the pickup.

    “We charged both drivers with DUI,” Humphreys said.     In other department news:

    Deputies assisted the Water Valley Police Department apprehend a suspect believed to be linked to a burglary on Calhoun Street Sunday morning.  The suspect was picked up Monday afternoon in a joint operation between the county and city.  At presstime charges had not been filed.

    “The robbery in the city was similar to another armed robbery we are investigating in the county that occurred on August 15,” Humphreys reported.

    In that incident, which occurred around 5 a.m. on County Road 101, a black male wielding a firearm demanded money from the victim.

    “We have recovered some evidence and are working on several leads in this case,” Humphreys said.

    • Worked a traffic accident on County Road 211 on August 26. A citation was issued for leaving the scene of an accident.

    • Took a report of a stolen boat motor on County Road 253 on August 29.

    • Investigated a death on County Road 129 on August 31. The cause of death is pending an autopsy, according to Coroner Ronnie Stark.

    • Answered a call reporting domestic violence on County Road 224 on the 28th. No charges were filed at presstime.

    • Investigated a report of vandalism  at 133 Gore Circle.

    • Took a report of bad checks being passed on August 31.

    • Made an arrest for drug paraphernalia and trespassing after a homeowner discovered a female had been staying in his cabin for several days.

    • Took a report of trespassing on Hwy. 315 South on August 28.

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