Suspects arrested in burglaries

Published 8:44 pm Monday, February 21, 2011

A stakeout led to the arrest of two men in connection with two burglaries at Spurlock Metal Company.

The first incident occurred Feb. 14, when business owners reported that a burglary had taken place and large amounts of metal were placed into trashcans at the business. “They apparently were going to come back and get the metal,” said Troy Police Sgt. Benny Scarbrough.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

“During the course of a stakeout detail last week, police observed suspects trying to enter the warehouse at Spurlock,” Scarbrough said.

The two men were arrested shortly after midnight on Friday morning.

Clayton Alexander Copeland, 19, of Troy and Brandon Adam Viers, 23, of Goshen, were charged with third-degree burglary and possession of burglary tools. They were each held on $5,000 bond.

“During the course of the investigation, (Copeland) confessed to the Feb. 14 incident, as well,” Scarbrough said. He was charged with an additional county of third-degree burglary, with another $5,000 bond.

The arrests are the most recent in a string of arrests related to burglary and theft cases.

On Feb. 1, Troy Police charged four men with August 2010 burglary of S&C Clothing on East Walnut Street. Janorias Vanquez Maddox, 19, and Andrew Smiley, 20, were arrested earlier this month. Bonds for both men were set at $2,500. Two juveniles, whose names were not released, also were charged in connection with the burglaries.

Forensic evidence helped lead to the arrests. “DNA evidence that one of the detectives had sent off recently came back with information indicating it matched one of the suspects in the case,” Scarbrough said.

Also, on Feb. 10, three juveniles were taken into custody in connection with the Feb. 9 burglary of Charles Henderson Middle School.

Finally, police have made two arrests for possession of a forged instrument. Willie Hemphill, 52, of Atlanta, was charged Feb. 10 with two counts of first-degree possession of a forged instrument. His bond was set at $15,000 on each charge.

“He was in possession of two checks, both written on a Pike County Cattleman’s Foundation account,” Scarbrough said. “The checks were written to Hemphill and were in the amounts of $1,364.39 and $1,571.23.”

Scarbrough said the checks were discovered at a local bank, which led to Hemphill’s arrest.

“I don’t know if these are related to the theft of the checks from the Pike County Water Assocaition,” Scarbrough said. Authorities there said mail was stolen from the box at the association office on Feb. 3. The mail contained payments from association customers.

In an unrelated incident, Scarbrough Crystal Gail Phillips, 31, of Troy, was charged Feb. 11, for second-degree possession of a forged instrument in connection with a Feb. 3 incident. Her bond was set at $5,000.

“She had a check which had been taken out of a checkbook from a victim who lived in Ozark,” Scarbrough said.