Suspect in interstate theft ring captured

Editor's Note: An earlier version of this story identified a business, which the sheriff now says was not involved.


Another suspect in an interstate motor vehicle theft ring has been arrested after police received an anonymous tip on his whereabouts.

Joseph Clayton Thaxton was found Monday at a residence on Green Road. He joins Vernon Jerome Neely Jr. and Elmer Howard Gilman on felony charges stemming from an investigation into car thefts. Thaxton is charged with theft by receiving stolen property and theft by deception.

Police continue to search for Vernon Jerome Neely Sr.

Police in Richmond and Columbia counties began investigating a shop at  4040 Belair Road, after they discovered it did not have a valid business license.

Through an investigation, police learned that four men were using a unmarked roll-back truck to steal disabled vehicles throughout the area. The stolen vehicles were then taken to local recycling and salvage yards to be sold.

Investigation reveals auto theft ring