A quick response from Pocahontas County Sheriff’s Department Chief Deputy Dave Walton led to the recovery of lottery tickets stolen from Buckeye County Mart, as well as the capture of two individuals wanted for breaking and entering in four counties in Virginia.
Walton had just gone on duty Friday morning when he received a call from the Pocahontas County 911 center concerning a breaking and entering at Buckeye County Mart. When he arrived at the store, he found that the glass in the front door had been broken and an estimated $4,000 worth of lottery tickets had been stolen – case and all.
Walton was able to get a description of the vehicle – a white utility van – and received information that the vehicle had been seen traveling north toward Slaty Fork. The vehicle was located, shortly thereafter, in the parking lot of The Fiddlehead Restaurant just off Rt. 219.
According to the complaint filed in Magistrate Carrie Wilfong’s court, the driver of the vehicle, Stephen L. James, 38, of Roanoke, Virginia, got out of the vehicle and walked toward Walton. James said that he had stopped to rest.
Walton approached the vehicle and found a passenger, Robert Wayne Rakes, 35, of Roanoke, Virginia, as well as a large number of lottery tickets – many of them from stores in Virginia.
In the search of the vehicle, Walton found what appeared to be methamphetamine and heroin loaded in several syringes and in individual packets, as well as scales, indicating the sale of narcotics.
It was also discovered that the license plate on the utility van was stolen from a vehicle in Lewisburg and had been taped to the Virginia tag underneath.
James and Rakes were charged with felony offenses with regard to the lottery tickets. Each ticket, 577 from Buckeye County Mart, carries its own felony charge as the tickets are the property of the state. Each ticket has its own serial number.
They were also charged with breaking and entering, possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver and destruction of property. Bond for each was set at $50,000.
Walton said Virginia would issue Fugitive from Justice warrants for the two individuals concerning crimes committed in that state.
Walton is the lead investigator in this case, and was assisted by West Virginia State Police Sgt. Herby Barlow.