Arrest Made in Theft of Catalytic Converters
Tue, 05/11/2021 - 3:12pm admin
Amanda Mendez, Publisher
Police have arrested a suspect in the theft of two catalytic converters from church vans in Willow Springs. According to information from the Willow Springs Police Department, a single subject stole the first converter from a church van parked outside First General Baptist Church on April 24 at about 2:30 a.m. Security footage from the church shows what appears to be the same individual returning to FGBC on April 26 at 2:30 a.m. and stealing a second catalytic converter from another van parked on the property. In the surveillance footage, a vehicle circled the area periodically after dropping off the subject who crawled under the vans and cut out the car parts.
According to a probable cause statement completed by Assistant Chief Wes Ellison, Dwayne Prediger, 34, of Willow Springs, was pulled over on April 26 by Officer Corey Clark of the WSPD wearing clothes that matched those worn by the subject in the surveillance footage at the church. There was a Sawzall on the dashboard of the vehicle. Prediger was not taken into custody at that time.
Police received additional surveillance evidence on April 27 and at that point suspected Prediger as the subject.
Officer Clark arrested Prediger on May 5 for a Clark County warrant. While at the police station, Asst. Chief questioned the suspect about the theft of the van parts, and Prediger confessed that he stole them and then sold them to a subject in West Plains. He refused, however, to identify the driver of the vehicle seen in the video footage.
Stealing charges against Prediger are pending but have not been filed as of press time.