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Agriculture Today

Bradberry sentenced; two arrested for cattle theft

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December 14, 2011 | 4,320 views | 1 comment

Convicted cattle thief Michael Bradberry, 52, of Alto, Texas, was sentenced to 32 years in prison and $173,000 in restitution Oct. 21 by 2nd Judicial District Court Judge Dwight Phifer, according to an Oct. 21 Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association press release.

Bradberry was found guilty in August 2011 after an investigation led by Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association Special Ranger Jimmy Dickson revealed he had stolen more than $100,000 worth of cattle and money from his employer over a two-year period.

“Rural theft is a very serious crime, and today we were able to send a clear message that, in Cherokee County, we don’t tolerate theft of any kind,” Dickson said.

Arrests made

As one man was convicted of theft, an investigation led by Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association Special Ranger Doug Hutchison led to the arrest of two siblings on charges of livestock theft. The suspects were arrested after allegedly stealing nine head of cattle in December 2008 from a U.S. Army Apache helicopter pilot who was serving in Iraq.

Diana Marie Brown, 27, of Elgin was served with two charges Oct. 20, according to a cattle raisers press release, while Brown was serving time in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice on an unrelated crime.

Her brother, Garrett Wayne Brown, 20, of Lexington was arrested in September 2011 in Lee County. Garrett Brown faces one charge of theft and is currently out on a $25,000 bond.

“A good tip from an informant and solid record keeping by the livestock markets helped us capture the suspects,” Hutchison said.

The Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association has 30 special rangers stationed strategically throughout Texas and Oklahoma who have in-depth knowledge of the cattle industry and are trained in all facets of law enforcement. All are commissioned as Special Rangers by the Texas Department of Public Safety and/or the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation.

Anyone with information on any cattle theft or equipment should call the Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association’s Operation Cow Thief hotline at 1-888-830-2333.

Editor’s Note: Area cattle ranchers are reminded the deadline to renew brands with the Wilson County Clerk’s Office is Feb. 29, 2012.

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December 14, 2011 5:51pm

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