Three men arrested in Yalobusha County last week were picked up by the Rankin County sheriff’s department after being linked to three burglaries of Dollar General Stores in Mississippi.
Aaron Harris, Derrick Francis and James Washington were arrested January 29 and charged with possession of burglary tools following a traffic stop. Sheriff Lance Humphreys reported the men were likely targeting the Dollar General Store in Coffeeville for a burglary at the time of their arrest. They confessed to at least three Dollar General break-ins and several attempts across the state.
Other law enforcement activity during the last week included:
• Made an arrest for possession of paraphernalia on Hwy. 7 on Feb. 2;
• Worked a traffic accident in the parking lot at the Oakland Shell Station on Feb. 2;
• Worked a traffic accident on County Road 211 after a motorist struck three to five guineas in the road. The vehicle sustained damage in the incident;
• Responded to an attempted burglary outside Coffeeville on County Road 421. The sheriff reported the homeowner was sitting in his house when he saw the door start to open. He then jerked it open and found a 16 year-old attempting to enter the home. The juvenile was detained and turned over to juvenile court.
• School Resource officer Regis Mister seized a small amount of marijuana from a 15 year-old student at the Water Valley High School. The student was turned over to youth court. Deputy Mister reported problems at the school during the 2012-13 school year. He attributed cameras in the school as a deterrent, especially for fights. Mister said there have only been two or three fights during the school year, down from the previous school year.
By David Howell
WATER VALLEY – The Yalobusha County Crime Stoppers board authorized a $3,000 payment to the sheriff’s department to purchase four AR-15s.
Supervisors approved the transfer with a budget amendment during the “first Monday” board meeting in Water Valley.
Sheriff Lance Humphreys cited school security as the primary reason for Crime Stoppers making the donation.
“This will help ensure our department has adequate firepower in case there is a problem at either school in the county,” Humphreys said. “We are very thankful for this donation.”
The money in the Crime Stoppers’ budget comes from a small fee added to tickets written in the county.
Humphreys said a number of his deputies have personal high-capacity rifles they currently keep in their patrol vehicles. Although the deputies train and are certified with these personal weapons, he explained having department-issued rifles is less liability for the county.
“We hope that Crimestoppers will be able to donate another $3,000 in the future so we can purchase four more AR-15s,” the sheriff added.
The donation will not deplete reward money used by Crimestoppers to pay for tips to help solve crimes in the county. Humphreys said the maximum reward, up to $1,000 , for tips could also be increased to obtain information in specific cases.
Almost a year and a half has passed and local authorities still have few leads in a brutal assault that changed the life of a 23 year-old man.
Marcus White was beaten with a 2×4 and iron pipe and dumped naked in a ditch on County Road 25 back in Sept. 2011. The injuries have left him unable to speak and authorities have few leads in the case.
Sheriff Lance Humphreys is reaching out to the public for leads.
“This is a case we don’t want to let get cold,” the sheriff said. “We believe the suspects will probably be from Yalobusha County or nearby.”
Humphreys told the Herald he fields calls regularly from White’s family asking for updates.
“I would love to be able to tell them we have made an arrest,” the sheriff said.
Last May White’s mom, Lottie Morgan, told the Herald her son had been beat and robbed in the brutal incident.
Humphreys said the Yalobusha County Crime-stoppers will pay top dollar for information in this crime.
Typically Crimestoppers will pay up to $1000 for the information, but additional money could be added to the award in this case, Hum-phreys explained. Callers can remain anonymous. If you have information contact Crime Stoppers at 1-866-933-TIPS or 473-4935.
Tips can also be sent by email to: TIPS@ Yalobusha County.net.