Brantley police officer arrested for involvement in theft of road signs
Published 4:35 pm Tuesday, July 12, 2016
A Brantley police officer has recently been placed on administrative leave after being arrested in Pike County for receiving stolen property.
Jeremey Walker was arrested on July 5 in connection with the theft of multiple Crenshaw County roads signs. The signs were reported stolen from Crenshaw and were sold in Pike County.
“There was a warrant on him for his arrest, which was in Pike County to my knowledge,” said Brantley Chief of Police Titus Averett.
“He went and basically turned himself in, bonded out and he is waiting to go to court on those charges of receiving stolen property.”
According to Crenshaw County Engineer Benjie Sanders, road signs in the Glenwood area began going missing six months back. Whether or not Walker was the culprit behind these disappearances, Sanders is not sure, but the signs had to be replaced regardless.
“I live on the other side of Glenwood and over the last several months I’d be on the way back and forth to work and I would be coming in on Monday and notice that just about every sign in Glenwood had been taken off the post,” Sanders said.
“I pulled our reports from the last six months, and it’s cost the county to repair or replace signs about $21,000.”
The Pike County Sheriff’s Office began their investigation of this case back in April.
“We’ve got him charged with receiving stolen property over here with these signs,” said Lt. Troy Johnson with the Pike County Sheriff’s Office.
“There’s a total of 29 signs, and they are all believed to be stolen from Crenshaw County. As far as him stealing the signs, I believe he is the one stealing them, but we do not have him charged with that.”
After speaking to Sanders, it was determined that the signs were not obtained legally from Sanders or the Crenshaw County Highway Department, since older or damaged signs are kept by the department and sold for county revenue.
“We’ve had problems with people stealing signs all along. It’s not anything new, but it had just gotten really bad in recent months. I can’t definitively say if it’s the same signs, but it looks like our signs. They are newer signs and some of them have been refaced, and we do that here,” Sanders said.
“So, it’s obvious to me that those signs did come off somebody’s roads.”
Walker has served with the Brantley Police Department for a little over two months, according to Averett. Walker was also previously employed with the Crenshaw County Sheriff’s Office and resigned May 2.
“Now, he’s just waiting on his court date. Once we find the outcome of that, hopefully everything will turn out good in his favor, I’m hoping,” Averett said.
The following 29 signs were recovered:
One traffic law photo enforcement sign
One red light sign
One stop sign
Two yellow marker signs
Six speed limit signs
Two yellow direction arrow signs
Two 35 mph signs
One speed bump ahead sign
One do not enter sign
One one-way sign
One raised letter speed limit sign
Nine Crenshaw County road signs
One entering Crenshaw County sign