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Undercover operation leads to arrest in connection to stolen Red Bird fire trucks

Posted at 10:13 AM, Apr 03, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-04 21:54:49-04

WAGONER COUNTY, Okla. — Wagoner County Sheriff's Office deputies have arrested a man in connection to the burglary of two Red Bird fire trucks.

RELATED STORY: Sheriff's Office seeks assistance after Red Bird Fire Department trucks stolen

Deputies said John Lafayette Moats Jr. was arrested after an undercover operation led to the recovery of fire truck equipment that was stripped from the stolen trucks.

Moats Jr. was charged with second-degree burglary, larceny of an automobile, knowingly concealing stolen property and owning/operating a chop shop, deputies said.

"It is a shock to the conscious that someone would steal fire trucks from a volunteer fire department," said Sheriff Chris Elliott. "Those firemen use that equipment to save lives, and they do that important work for free. My deputies and investigators have been doing some good work on this case to bring those responsible to justice. It is our belief that Moats did not work alone. Saying that, I do anticipate more arrests as the investigation continues."

Moats Jr. is currently being held on a $20,000 bond.

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