November 10, 2020
Lincolnton, NC – Three people have been arrested in connection with the theft of road name signs and directional signs in western Lincoln County.
On Saturday, November 8, 2020 North Carolina Wildlife officers were observing a field waiting on illegal hunters when a white pickup truck occupied by four people pulled up to a road sign on Hog Hill Road. All four men exited the vehicle and tied a chain around the post at one end and attached the other end to the back of the truck. They got back into the vehicle and pulled the sign post out of the ground. Then they loaded the sign into the back of the truck.
North Carolina Wildlife officers conducted a traffic stop on the vehicle and requested Sheriff’s deputies to respond reference the stolen signs. In the bed of the truck officers located four street name signs and two directional signs valued at approximately $1,900.
Deputies filed the following charges:
- Chandler Steven Johnson, 20, of Vale, NC with one felony count of larceny, one felony count of conspiracy, and one misdemeanor count of damage to real property.
- Jackson Lee Bass, 23, of Newton, NC with one felony count of larceny, one felony count of conspiracy, and one misdemeanor count of damage to real property.
- Austin Levi Gilbert, 23, of Vale, NC with one felony count of larceny, one felony count of conspiracy, and one misdemeanor count of damage to real property.
The men were taken before a Lincoln County magistrate and placed in the Harven A. Crouse Detention Center under a $5,000 secured bond.
The driver of the vehicle is a 17-year-old juvenile and was turned over to his parents. His case will be handled in the Juvenile Justice system.