Created on Saturday, 01 December 2012 Written by EXAMINER STAFF and WIRE REPORTS
RIDGEWAY — Three men have been charged with felonies and a fourth suspect is in custody facing charges as several law enforcement agencies helped sift through what they believe to be hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of stolen goods stashed on a rural Hardin County property.
Hardin County Sheriff's deputy Willie Culvert looks over the items in one of eight trucks of items recovered at 16363 Township Road 204, Ridgeway. (Photo/Kenton Times)
According to various published reports, Hardin County Sheriff's deputies have charged Aaron Sells, 27, and two of his friends, Michael Moore, 21, and Jasin Rorabough, 19, with receiving stolen property in connection with a theft operation affecting multiple counties. Sells and Rorabough reside in Ridgeway and Moore lives in Mt. Victory.
A months long investigation of the theft ring by the Hardin County Sheriff's Office culminated with a traffic stop of a suspicious vehicle sometime Monday night that prompted authorities to search the property at 16363 Township Road 204, Ridgeway.
Six law enforcement agencies assisted in a subsequent four-day search of the property that included nearby outhouses and items that were reportedly buried underground, including a case of snack cakes.
Logan and Union County Sheriff's deputies assisted in the search of a residence, which is owned by Sells' parents, on the property where they uncovered a host of stolen goods such as all-terrain vehicles, high-end electronics and power tools.
By Friday night, authorities had filled two flatbed trailers, a semi-trailer and a car hauler with what they believe are goods stolen from Logan, Union, Marion, and Shelby counties and some others from the Cincinnati and Columbus areas.
A total of eight trucks of various sizes were used to haul away the recovered items, which include a log-splitter, dune buggy, stolen guns, chainsaws, and kerosene heaters.
Sells was shot in 2009 by two teenagers who allegedly caught him stealing items from the family barn north of Mt. Victory.
Dan Freeman, who lives next door, said he's long thought that the junk piling up everywhere was stolen. He said most people around there has had a break-in.
"Maybe now the trouble will end and the mess will disappear," he said.
A Logan County farmer heard about the raid and on Friday gave authorities a list of all that he's been missing from his barns.
The suspects have bond hearings scheduled for 11 a.m. Monday in Hardin County Municipal Court. Additional charges are expected.