• 81°

Police: At least 50 units stolen

Messenger Publisher

Police have located approximately 50 air-conditioning units they believe were stolen from the Pike County Board of Education, then sold to private individuals or businesses.

"The investigation, for all practical purposes, is just beginning," said District Attorney Mark Fuller.

According to information released Tuesday by Troy Police Chief Anthony Everage, the 50 units were shipped to the Bus Lot on Montgomery Street in Troy and billed to the school system. They are now located on private property, including both residential and commercial locations.

"Another 20 units are still in question because they had no serial numbers or the serial numbers were not legible," said Sgt. Benny Scarbrough, public information officer for the police department. "Police are in the process of identifying these units in other ways."

Timothy Dewayne Spivey, 43, of Troy was charged last week with first degree theft in connection with the case. Police say Spivey, who worked for more than 20 years as maintenance supervisor for the Pike County school system, apparently ordered units and billed them to the Board of Education then sold and installed the units through his private business, City Electric Co.

The charge filed last week cited only 10 units, and more charges could be filed. "The cases are under investigation, but I certainly would not rule that out," Fuller said.

Both Spivey and his brother, Johndi Spivey, were placed on administrative leave by the district.

"Over the past week, detectives have looked at approximately 110 air conditioner units that we received information about and (that) could possibly be connected to this case," Scarbrough said. "There are several other locations where units are located that still have to be checked."

Both Fuller and Everage had asked that anyone who had done business with City Electric Co. since 1996 contact the police investigators at 566-0500. The goal is to locate any possibly stolen units. "Right now, we just want to track them down and keep up with them," Fuller said. "I want to

reassure them that I have no intention in coming and getting the air-conditioning unit."

Neither Fuller nor Everage could say what would ultimately happen to any units confirmed stolen. "If there (is) any solution worked out with the school board, it will probably be on any units we’ve identified at that time," Everage said. "If a solution is worked out, we want to be sure we’ve identified and verified all the units we can."

Despite some concerns in the public, both Everage and Fuller said pursuing this investigation, which was brought to the attention of law enforcement by the superintendent of Pike County’s school system.

"Our only interest in this is the facts," Everage said. ‘We want to do a good, thorough investigation and make sure that evidence is available to the District Attorney’s office."