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Third Time’s No Charm

By Staff | Jul 28, 2009

Bridgeport Equipment and Tool had three riding lawn movers removed from their property early Sunday morning. . . and it was all caught on their security cameras. On July 26 at 1:17 a.m., Patrolman Russell Smitley of the New Martinsville Police Department was doing his night patrol when he noticed a truck pulling out of the Bridgeport Equipment area at such a late hour. In the bed of the truck was a riding lawn mover that did not look to be loaded and secured correctly.

According to NMPD Detective Donnie Harris, Smitley turned on his cruiser’s lights to make the suspect pull over, but instead the truck fled across the Korean War Veterans bridge into Monroe County.

A Monroe County Deputy did get the vehicle to stop, but the male suspect who was driving, Michael R. Alleman, 37, of Clarington, managed to flee on foot. He is wanted on three counts of grand larceny.

A female passenger in the truck was taken into custody by a Monroe County Deputy. Cassandra A. Coppen, 22, of Clarington, was arrested and is now being housed in the Belmont County Jail. She is awaiting extradition back to Wetzel County.

Harris said a total of three riding lawn mowing tractors were stolen, which Alleman came back for separately at Bridgeport Equipment. Two of the riding tractors were found at Alleman’s home and the third was on the bed of the truck. All of the equipment was recovered.

The amount value of the stolen riding lawn mowers is approximately $24,600. Both West Virginia and Ohio law enforcement are on the look out for Alleman.