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10/23/2011

Two Stolen Vehicles Lead to Two Pursuits and Two Manhunts

 Travis Shane Adams

 

Johnny Ray Lee

Thomas Andrew Blackmon

 

      The Baxter County Sheriff’s Office along with the Arkansas State Police, the Mountain Home Police, Briarcliff City Marshall and the Arkansas Department of Corrections Dog Tracking Team were kept busy Saturday following two separate manhunts that both originated from stolen vehicles.

     Briarcliff City Officials discovered Friday morning that a service truck along with chainsaws, power washers  and other items were stolen from the City’s compound in Briarcliff overnight.  A review of the surveillance video showed that at approximately 2:15 am, two males broke into the City of Briarcliff’s Maintenance yard by using bolt cutters to cut the padlock.  After loading numerous items from other vehicles and the fenced area, one of the two suspects left and the second suspect drove the stolen service truck away. 

     At approximately 11:30 am on Saturday, the Mayor of Briarcliff spotted the stolen vehicle and radioed for the Briarcliff City Marshall for assistance.  The vehicle fled from the Marshall and drove off a steep embankment into the woods crashing into a tree near the end of Rocky Ridge Road, Southeast of Mountain Home.  Two men were seen fleeing into the woods.

     A perimeter was established by Deputies and Troopers from the Arkansas State Police and the Baxter County Sheriff’s Office helicopter, along with the Arkansas Department of Corrections K-9 Team from the Prison at Calico, was activated.  At approximately 1:30 pm, the suspects were located by the Tracking Dog Team. One suspect, Johnny Lee, was taken into custody without incident with the second one fleeing further into the woods.

     Information was developed about the second suspect.  Investigators went to a residence on Peach Tree Lane, just off Pioneer Trail Rd, just east of Mountain Home, where the suspect had been seen two days prior.  While at the residence on Peachtree Lane, Investigators discovered several items from the Briarcliff Theft along with various other items that were believed to be stolen by the two suspects as well.

     While at the residence on Peachtree Lane, Investigators noticed a gray Pontiac Grand Am pull into the driveway, turn around suddenly and speed off.  Investigator Eric Neal  took off after the vehicle.  The vehicle speed across Bus Route 62 onto Buzzard Roost Cutoff, crossing Hwy 178 into the Kingswood Subdivision.  While Investigator Neal was looking for the vehicle in the Kingswood Subdivision, The Mountain Home Police Department reported they were taking a report of a 2002 Pontiac Grand AM that had been reported stolen from the Care Manor Nursing Home in Mountain Home.   A few minutes later the vehicle drove back onto Buzzard Roost driving across the Bypass heading East.  Investigator Neal reported the suspect vehicle was driving at a high rate of speed and passing other cars on a double yellow line.  Investigator Neal lost sight of the vehicle near the intersection of Christianson Road. 

     The Baxter County Sheriff’s Helicopter was already in the air from the first manhunt and diverted to assist.  The Spotter in the helicopter located the vehicle abandoned, on Hazelnut Court.  Arkansas State Police Officer David Small arrived and notified that the suspect had fled into the woods.  The Sheriff’s Helicopter located the suspect hiding under a log and brush approximately 400 yards from the stolen vehicle.   The helicopter guided Trooper Small to the suspect, Thomas Blackmon, where he was taken into custody without incident.   The 2002 Pontiac Grand AM was recovered at the scene.

     The manhunt was called off at approximately 6:30 pm.  There is one suspect still at large.  The suspect has been identified as 22 year old, Travis Shane Adams.  Adams is wanted by the Baxter County Sheriff’s Office for numerous charges. Adams is not believed to be armed.  Briarcliff’s Service Truck was recovered. 

Johnny Ray Lee, age 37 of Mountain Home was charged with:

Possession of Stolen Property      Class C Felony
Felony Fleeing                                 Class D Felony

Lee's bond was set at $25,000 pending his appearance in Baxter County Circuit Court on October 27.

Thomas Andrew Blackmon, age 41 of Gassville was charged with:

Theft of Stolen Property                 Class C Felony
Felony Fleeing                                   Class D Felony

Blackmon's bond was set at $10,000 pending his appearance in Baxter County Circuit Court on October 27.

The third suspect, 22 year old Travis Shane Adams  is still at large.He is described as 5 ft 11 inches, weight 160 lbs. bro hair and hazel eyes.

      Anyone with information concerning the whereabouts of Travis Adams are asked to contact the Baxter County Sheriff’s Office at 807-425-7000.

Agencies assisting the Baxter County Sheriff's Office were the Arkansas State Police, Mountain Home Police, Briarcliff and the Arkansas Department of Corrections K-9 Team.

Sheriff John Montgomery

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