On September 11, LaGrange County Sheriff’s Department received a report of a stolen vehicle from 3085 N 900 E. LaGrange would be the culmination of a 3 day spree of auto thefts spanning three countries. The thefts started on September 9 with the theft of a 2003 Dodge Pickup from Scott Wilson of Garret. The suspects then stole a 2001 Chevrolet Pickup from Joseph Shibler, of rural Steuben County later the same day. On September 9 around 7:00 p.m. a report of the theft of gasoline from the Ducks C Store was reported and investigated by Indiana State Police Trooper Mike Carroll. During the investigation it was found that both stolen vehicles driven by the suspects drove off without paying for fuel on the 10th. The owner and manager of the convenience store provided crucial video evidence of the drive offs allowing officers not only to identify one of the stolen vehicles but both vehicles, as well as enough video of two suspects. With the assistance of LaGrange County Sheriff’s Department, one of the two suspects was able to be possibly identified as Brady Burlew of rural LaGrange.
Later during the evening of the 10th, Steuben County Sheriff’s Department located one of the stolen vehicles on their west county line road, south of county road 300 N. The vehicle had been flipped into a ditch resulting in extensive damage. LaGrange County Deputies discovered while checking the area due to evidence that the second stolen vehicle had been involved and also wrecked in the area. Deputies located the 2003 Dodge Pickup approximately 3 miles away from the first crash scene, abandoned and disabled in the roadway due to extensive front end damage. The third vehicle, a 2007 Pontiac G6 was stolen from the Richard Mills residence, a mile north of where the second truck was abandoned.
With the information received from the video surveillance, multiple departments including the Indiana State Police, Steuben County Sheriff’s Department, LaGrange County Sheriff’s Department, and DeKalb County Sheriff’s Department began a search of possible locations of the suspects and the 2007 Pontiac, which was later located outside of Ashley. Burlew was located with a second male, Michael Moore of Garrett, and upon investigation both subjects admittedly were involved in the theft of the three vehicles, as well as the gasoline thefts. After the two suspects were transported to the LaGrange County Sheriff’s Department, Burlew was also found to be in possession of a schedule 2 controlled substance adding an additional felony charge.
Both Burlew and Moore are being held with a $16,000 bind in LaGrange County Jail on multiple felony charges from Auto Theft, Possession of a stolen vehicle, Theft of gas, and Possession of a CS Sch. 2.