Pike Sheriff Dept. recovers stolen antiques

Published 12:00 am Thursday, February 22, 2001

Staff Writer

Feb. 21, 2001 10 PM

Cooperation between the Brundidge Police Department and the Pike County Sheriff’s Department led to the arrest of a Crenshaw County man.

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David Pittman, 26, was arrested in connection with allegedly stealing some antique syrup kettles valued at between $700 and $1,000.

On Feb. 12, John L. Fryer of the Pronto Community reported the two 80-gallon iron kettles had been taken from his property sometime between 9:30 a.m. and 1 p.m., when he visited the pasture where he used them to water his cows.

He called Sheriff Russell Thomas, who sent Frank Wheeler, an investigator with his department and neighbor of Fryer’s, to the scene of the crime. Then, Brundidge Police Chief Moses Davenport was contacted and both agencies worked together to find who was responsible.

"We were able to cast some tracks," Thomas said of some vehicle tracks on the land.

Those casts and other pieces of evidence, connected Pittman to the scene, Thomas said.

"We had two things that could have put him there," Wheeler said of the suspect.

Davenport expressed appreciation to the sheriff’s department because of the cooperative effort between the two agencies.

"It’s always easier when we work as a team," Davenport said.

After two days of trying to locate Pittman, the arrest was made Tuesday.

Thomas said, during an interview with the suspect, Pittman confessed to taking the property from Fryer’s land and taking it to a barn in Crenshaw County for resale.

"We were glad to be able to assist Mr. Fryer in getting that property back because of its family history," Thomas said.

Fryer said the kettles were used by family members 100 years ago to make syrup in the family-run cane mill.

"I really appreciate their good work," Fryer said of the law enforcement officers who worked together to recover the antiques.

Pittman was released on a $2,500 Crenshaw County bond. The Crenshaw County Sheriff’s Department also assisted in the case.