Texas man arrested for stealing 10 head of cattle
Paris, Texas – A Powderly, Texas man was arrested Tuesday and charged with felony theft of livestock after stealing 10 head of heifers from a Lamar County rancher.
Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association (TSCRA) Special Ranger Toney Hurley led the investigation and TSCRA Special Ranger Harold Dempsey assisted.
The suspect Harold Duane Fleming, 59, of Powderly, Texas, stole 10 head of heifers from a rancher located in the northeast part of Lamar County. According to Hurley, the victim contacted the Lamar County Sheriff’s Office after he realized the heifers were missing from his livestock pens.
Two of the stolen heifers were found running loose on the roadway with abrasions and cuts, suggesting they possibly escaped from a moving trailer a short distance from the rancher’s pens.
The investigation revealed that two of the stolen cattle had been checked into the Hugo Livestock Market Inc. sale barn in Hugo, Okla. on Sept. 11 under Fleming’s name. The victim identified the heifers with his brand and photographs of the cattle taken by Hurley.
The remaining six head of stolen heifers were located and recovered. The suspect will be charged with restitution for the 10 head of stolen heifers.
A warrant was issued out of the Lamar County District Attorney’s Office and Fleming was arrested for felony theft of livestock. He is currently being held in the Lamar County Jail on a $50,000 bond. This is an ongoing investigation and additional charges are possible.
TSCRA would like to thank the Lamar County Sheriff’s Office for their assistance in this investigation.
“This case is a perfect example of how important it is for ranchers to brand their cattle,” said Hurley. “All 10 of the stolen heifers were identified and located because they had a brand on their hip. I encourage all ranchers to follow this precaution and keep a close watch on their cattle, especially when they are being held in a pen.”
–Texas Southwest Cattle Raisers Association
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Outtagrass Cattle Co. cartoon by Jan Swan Wood for the June 19, 2021, edition of Tri-State Livestock News