Amid COVID19 crisis, devoted deputy serves and protects
Sheriff Chris Elliott credits an alert deputy with taking down a potential crime spree in the making.
"Through textbook police work, Deputy Matt Lott and Edo uncovered a multi-faceted operation that should serve as a reminder for us all," Elliott continued, "that criminals have no respect for pandemics - or the lockdowns meant to protect the public."
During routine patrol on April 13, Lott encountered a vehicle obstructing traffic stop near E. 65th and S. 209th E. Ave. in Broken Arrow. By the time the encounter concluded and Lott had followed textbook procedure, three suspects were behind bars on a variety of felony complaints.
"We place a high emphasis on traffic stops like this," Elliott said, "because our experience shows, major criminals use our roads to perpetrate their crimes and victimize citizens."
Lott came upon the vehicle near E. 65th and S. 209th E. Ave. in Broken Arrow as the driver loaded items into the back seat and two passengers waited inside. When Lott made the driver aware of Edo, the driver admitted to illegally possessing marijuana, which prompted a full search. Deputies uncovered a treasure trove of drugs; paraphernalia; immigration paperwork; materials to create fake identification and counterfeit checks; stolen checkbooks and other financial instruments; and tools commonly used for burglaries and break-ins.
The driver handed Lott a Kansas identification card that turned out to belong to someone else. Once fingerprinted, he was identified as Justin Chamberlin, a convicted felon wanted for parole violations in Kansas. A passenger also provided false information but was later identified as Brian Vineyard - also a convicted felon - of Kansas. The third suspect, William J. McCoy, provided a valid Oklahoma ID.
"With their carload of drugs and tools to commit break-ins and financial crimes, there's no telling how many people Deputy Lott saved from being victims," said Elliott. "Residents should rest easy knowing Lott and his fellow deputies are working hard to keep Wagoner County safe.
Elliott credits Lott and other patrol deputies with the types of observations during routine traffic encounters that contributed to a 30-percent reduction in major crimes since 2016.
Investigators are looking into whether the trio were involved in additional property or identity theft crimes. They're currently in the Wagoner County jail on multiple charges.
"If criminals think social distancing will deter us from fully investigating suspicious activity, they're sorely mistaken," said Elliott. "We will arrest you. We will identify you. And we will prosecute you to the fullest extent of the law - pandemic or no pandemic."
Brian Vinyard - Distribution of Controlled Substance possess with intent, False Personation or Impersonating another in suit or prosecution, Possession of Paraphernalia, Possession of Burglar Implements, Possession of Controlled Substance, Obstructing a Peace Officer
Justin Chamberlin - Distribution of Controlled Substance possess with intent, False Personation or Impersonating another in suit or prosecution, Possession of Paraphernalia, Possession of Burglar Implements, Obstructing a Peace Officer
William McCoy - Distribution of Controlled Substance possess with intent, Possession of Paraphernalia, Possession of Contraband by Inmate