The "Jeep Man" may be in deep, man - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

The "Jeep Man" may be in deep, man

Rolland Wayne Rich Rolland Wayne Rich

September 14, 2007

Albany -- Lots of lawn equipment and air conditioners have been stolen from properties all over Albany and Leesburg, and an Albany businessman is charged with buying them. 

Rolland Wayne Rich is charged with 10 felonies stemming from taking the stolen property. In all, about $12,000 worth of equipment has been recovered.

You may know him as the Jeep Man, 67-year-old Wayne Rich who sells automobiles, but Dougherty County Sheriff's Investigators say he also buys property in a business that isn't on the up and up.

"We got information from a confidential informant that there was a businessman who was taking a lot of stolen property," said Lt. Craig Dodd of the Dougherty County S.O.

Investigators say Rich bought big ticket items like a $3,000 John Deer riding mower and a golf cart, knowing they were stolen. "I think that anybody who takes stolen property to me, in my opinion and in the opinion of the law it's the same as the person who stole it and they will be prosecuted by the Sheriff's Office to the fullest extent of the law," said Dodd.

He's facing tough charges including 10 felonies. Seven for theft by receiving stolen property, three for criminal use of an article with an altered ID mark and a misdemeanor for theft by receiving stolen property.

But there could be more. "We're still investigating the situation and still getting information," said Dodd.

Investigators seized the stolen items from four locations, three in Dougherty County, including his business, Jeep Man, and from his Lake House in Crisp County.  They aren't sure what he was using the equipment for, but one things for certain, he won't be using it any time soon. 

The owners of the equipment have all been contacted about their property. This arrest closes out two cases for Dougherty County Police, two for Albany Police and one for Lee County.

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