McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

June 25, 2014

McAlester man charged with allegedly concealing stolen property

By PARKER PERRY
www.mcalesternews.com

— A McAlester man was charged Tuesday with two felony counts of knowingly concealing stolen property and another felony count of grand larceny.

Samson Middleton, 29, faces the three charges and misdemeanor petite larceny for his alleged role in the theft of lawn equipment.

On Sunday, police were called to West Stonewall Avenue because a homeowner wanted to report that a Bolen stealth one green push lawnmower and a Husqvarna 18-inch chainsaw was stolen from the back of a truck when the homeowner was not there, according to a police affidavit written by McAlester Police Officer Robert Young.

Though the alleged thief was able to make off with the goods, a neighbor reported seeing the offender’s truck and is believed to have recorded the license plate information.  

On Monday, while watching a stop sign, according to another police affidavit, police officer Chris Troussel spotted a truck that matched the description and had a license plate number that resembled, though not exact, to the one that was reported.

After pulling the truck over, Troussel stated in his affidavit that he saw a lawnmower and a trimmer in the back of the truck. After getting a positive identification on the mower by one of the homeowners who reported it missing the day before, Troussel brought the driver of the vehicle and the passenger, Middleton, in for questioning.

It is alleged that Middleton admitted during the questioning to taking the lawnmower and trimmer that was found in the back of the truck, and allegedly told police where they could find the chainsaw that went missing the day before.

The driver of the truck was not charged.

Middleton appeared in front of Special District Judge Tim Mills on Tuesday for an initial appearance. He pleaded innocent to the charges and bond was set at $12,000 for the three felonies and one misdemeanor charge.

He told Mills that he plans to apply for a court-appointed attorney. He is due back in court on July 18.

If convicted, Middleton could face a maximum 15 years and six months in prison. His three felony counts each can land him five years in prison, and the misdemeanor accounts for the six months. He could also face a possible fine of $6,500.

Contact Parker Perry at pperry@mcalesternews.com.