COVINGTON - The Newton County Sheriff's Office has made two arrests after receiving complaints of what officialstermed as "multiple burglaries" at the Newton County Water Authority.
According to NCSO spokesman Lt. Mark Mitchell, the Water Authority had complained about problems it was having at its facility on Brown Bridge Road.
"Through a collaborative effort between the Water Authority and Newton County Sheriff's Office, deputies were able to apprehend two individuals who were illegally on the property of the Water Authority facility at approximately 10:30 p.m. on Thursday," Mitchell said.
Christopher Brewer, 21, of Pine Valley Mobile Home Park, Ga. Highway 36, and Matthew Ford, 23, of Kirk Lane, Monticello were arrested. Both men were charged with criminal interference with government property, criminal trespass, obstruction of officers and loitering and prowling.
"NCSO investigators are looking into the matter to see if these suspects are linked to any other crimes in the area," Mitchell said.
NCSO Sheriff Ezell Brown said the arrests were good examples of what could happen through cooperation.
"This is what can be accomplished when the business sector and law enforcement work together," Brown said, adding that he urged all segments of the public to notify the Sheriff's Office when problems arise. "It takes a cooperative effort between law enforcement and the citizens of Newton County to make our quality of life better for us all."
In other crime news, NCSO deputies assisted in the arrest of a man who was wanted in connection with a 2003 California murder, according to Mitchell.
Keith Silva, 46, of 90 Mountain View Drive was taken into custody Wednesday without incident, Mitchell said.
NCSO deputies were notified by San Bernardino County Sheriff's Office investigators that Silva was living in Newton County and they would be coming to Covington to make an arrest.
"We assisted them in the service of the warrant," Mitchell said.
According to published reports from the San Bernardino Sun, Silva was a past president of the San Bernardino Chapter of the Vagos Motorcycle Gang. He allegedly murdered a man described as a "gang prospect" whose body was found in Landers, Calif.
San Bernardino Sheriff's Office investigators allege that Silva and a man by the name of David Beltran, 34, a sergeant-at-arms for one of the gang's chapters, killed Dennis Daoussis, 34. Beltran is said to already be behind bars in California due to a 2006 crime sweep by authorities that led to the confiscation of drugs, 100 illegal firearms, stolen motorcycles and Vagos gang paraphernalia. He was charged with the homicide in September 2007.
They said they do not know the motive for the murder of Daoussis.
Silva is still in the Newton County Detention Center awaiting extradition to California.
Barbara Knowles can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.