HAZARD — An ATV worth thousands of dollars that was stolen in June was recently recovered by the Perry County Sheriff’s Office after it was sold for just a few hundred dollars.
Employees with Kentucky Dredging were working on a job in the Busy community when their Rhino ATV was stolen on June 16. The Rhino had been a major piece of equipment for the company as many of their jobs could not be reached by the company trucks.
“The Rhino is their livelihood that gets up to where the trucks won’t go, and it takes the fuel to their equipment,” said Perry County Deputy Bruce Fields.
Several days after the report that the Rhino had been stolen, one of the workers at the dredging company had overheard someone taking about the machine which had one of their pumps in the back of it. The Rhino had several extras on it for use in the business, including an expensive pump for draining ponds, which increases its value.
“All together it was right under $20,000,” Fields said. “Right around $19,500 with the pump.”
Fields said the man who bought the Rhino reported paying only $700 for it after it was stripped of several items.
“They had stripped the Rhino down. They took the winch off of it, the roof, the lights,” said Fields. “They had to rip out the ignition switch out to actually start it.”
While it is still unknown what happened with the items removed from the vehicle, Fields said the man who sold the vehicle apparently attempted to sell the pump as well.
“He was trying to sell a $3,500 pump for $65,” Fields said, adding that the purchaser didn’t want the pump, but was given a receipt for the Rhino, written out by a man identified as Josh Williams.
“He had actually written out a receipt for $200 cash, and a $500 check,” said Fields.
Since then deputies have been trying to arrest Williams at his home. On July 9 they had surrounded his home, but Fields said he hid inside and refused to come out. By the time the deputies were able to return with a warrant to open the home he had fled.
They tried again to catch Williams at his home on July 10. Currently he is still wanted by police, though since he has stayed in the area deputies feel confident they will be able to capture him. They also feel that more charges may follow since they believe that more people were involved in the theft.